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Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah passed away  at 91 at a hospital in the United States, according to international media.

Sabah, following an unspecified condition, was flown to the United States in July for medical treatment after a surgery. Dubbed as the “dean of Arab diplomacy” Sheikh Sabah had ruled the Arab country since 2006 and had commandeered its foreign policy for the past 50 years.

Sheikh Sabah earned the title “dean of Arab diplomacy” for his efforts to restore relations with states that had thrown their weight behind Iraq during the 1990-91 Gulf War.

He came to power in January 2006 after Emir Sheikh Saad al-Abdullah was deposed on health grounds by the Kuwaiti parliament just nine days into his new role as the Emir.

During his time as prime minister of Kuwait under Emir Sheikh Jaber al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, he was considered by many as the de facto ruler of the oil-rich country.

He also served as Kuwait’s foreign minister from 1963 to 1991 and from 1992 to 2003. The Sabah family has ruled Kuwait for the past 260 years.

The position of the emir in Kuwait is a powerful one as he can order dissolve and override the parliament as well hold elections. 

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