Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Nawaf dies at 86

Kuwait’s Leader Sheikh Nawaf Passes Away at 86, Sheikh Meshaal Becomes New Leader

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Kuwait’s leader, Sheikh Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, died at 86. His death was announced on state television by Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah al-Sabah, a high-ranking official, who expressed deep sorrow over the loss. The government didn’t reveal the cause of his death but declared 40 days of national mourning and a three-day shutdown of government offices.

Following Sheikh Nawaf’s death, his half-brother, 83-year-old Sheikh Meshaal al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, was appointed the new Emir of Kuwait. Sheikh Nawaf became Emir in September 2020 after the end of another half-brother, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, who passed away in the United States at 91.

Sheikh Nawaf had a long history of serving in high-ranking positions in the government. He was the heir apparent since 2006 and held significant roles, including as defense minister during Iraq’s invasion in 1990 and later as interior minister. He was well-regarded within the ruling al-Sabah family for his modesty and low-profile approach.

Bader al-Saif, a history professor, spoke highly of Sheikh Nawaf’s contributions, emphasizing his efforts in national reconciliation, amnesty programs, and fostering a more inclusive political environment. Sheikh Nawaf was particularly noted for his pardons and for reducing the government’s influence in parliamentary affairs, which was seen as a positive step for public opinion and democracy in Kuwait.

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