Gulf: Oman has crown prince for first time

Dhi Yazan, son of sultan Haytham, appointed

13 January, 12:55

    BEIRUT - Dhi Yazan, the eldest son of sultan Haytham of Oman, has been named over the past hours the crown prince of Oman under a new State law that provides for the transfer of power ''from the sultan to his eldest son'', local media reported, quoting the government's office. The unprecedented decision in the history of the Arab country of the Gulf puts in place mechanisms of succession that are already present in neighboring Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Sultan Haytham over the past few days had announced, with a decree, the historic decision with the objective of ensuring a more ''stable'' system of transmission of power. The current sultan succeeded his cousin Qabus, who died in January 2020 after half a century in power. The fact that the elderly sultan, without a son or a brother, did not have a designated successor sparked concern on the stability of the political system of a country at a crossroads of global energy interests, between the Indian Ocean and the Gulf. Oman's current constitution states that the royal family needs to choose a successor within three days of the power void. In case of internal disagreement, the successor should be the one indicated by the sultan before his death. The mechanism now in place assures the succession between father and son. According to article 5 of the new law, ''the sultan's power is transferred to his eldest sons, then to the latter's oldest son and so forth''. The eldest son of the sultan, Dhi Yazan, is currently a minister of culture, sport and youth. According to article 5, ''if the sultan's eldest son dies before succeeding him in power, this goes to his oldest son, even if the deceased had brothers''. If the deceased sultan doesn't have sons, power is transferred to his oldest brother. According to another article of the law, ''in case of a temporary impediment concerning the sultan, the crown prince undertakes his tasks''. 

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