Saudi Arabia’s King Salman is making some bold moves to consolidate his power, the New York Times reports: one prince got the royal bump, another prince just got bumped out, and the first member of a new generation is priming to take over.
After appointing his half-brother to the post in January, Salman turned around and removed Muqrin bin Abdulaziz as Crown Prince Wednesday. In the meantime, the king is reportedly installing his 55-year-old nephew—the interior minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef—as his new successor.
He also named his son, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, as deputy crown prince and relieved the long-serving foreign minister, Prince Saud al-Faisal, who has shaped the kingdom’s foreign policy for nearly four decades.
(Mohammed is pictured above—chatting? royal scheming? asking if he remembered to DVR the Good Wife?—with his father in 2012)
Despite the appointments, however, getting his kid in line for the throne isn’t a definite. The crown has passed between the sons of the late King Abdul-Aziz bin Saud since the kingdom was founded, and confirming an heir is a complicated procedure involving a 35-person committee vote.
Still, the strong opening move pulls Salman’s son up out of a pool of hundreds of Abdul-Aziz’s grandkids. And you know what, I’ve seen this movie literally hundreds of times—watch your back for real, Prince Mohammed!!!!
[image via AP]