UAE President, Abu Dhabi’s Ruler Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Dies
UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has died, according to an official announcement by UAE news agency WAM on Friday, May 13.
Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who was also the ruler of Abu Dhabi, was elected as the new president of the UAE in 2004.
His role had been largely ceremonial since 2014 after he suffered a stroke.
He was seen as one of the most powerful people in the region, with TIME magazine having ranked him as “one of the 100 Most Influential People of 2019”. The New York Times in 2019 similarly dubbed him the most powerful Arab ruler, as well as one of the most powerful men on Earth.
Since 2004, the emir of Abu Dhabi was named “supreme commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces,” and was seen as one of the most influential individuals in both his own country, and the region as a whole as a key figure in global oil dealings.
He succeeded his father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who served as UAEPresident from 1971 to 2004 and is seen as one of the founders of the United Arab Emirates.
Born in the inland oasis-city of Al Ain in 1948, Khalifa was a strong supporter of the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).
He believed that the success and achievements of the GCC “reflect the depth of understanding reached amongst its leaders,” according to the UAE embassy.
Khalifa is the eldest son of Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. He graduated from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in Berkshire, Great Britain.
Sheikh Khalifa served as the 16th emir for the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
Khalifa was known for his several initiatives seeking to improve and reform political and economical conditions in the country.
Khalifa was also the chairman of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, a financial company. worth billions of dollars.
Source: Morocco World News.