Saudi reshuffles military, promotes woman at labour ministry
February 27, 2018 | 4:02 PM
by Reuters
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Photo - Files

Riyadh: Saudi Arabia has replaced some of its top military officers in a series of personnel changes that elevate a younger generation, bring a woman into a senior government job and tighten Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's grip on power.

In a reshuffle announced late on Monday, the military chief of staff, air defence and land forces heads and senior defence and interior ministry officials were removed.

Tamadur bint Youssef Al Ramah became deputy labour minister, a rare high-level job for a woman in the kingdom.

The crown prince, who at 32 is also defence minister and heir apparent, has promised reforms to wean Saudi Arabia off oil exports, create jobs and open up Saudis' cloistered lifestyles.

The latest personnel changes were decreed by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia and published in state media.

The new military chief of staff was named as First Lieutenant Fayyad bin Hamed Al Ruwayli.

The decrees included adopting a new strategy to restructure the defence ministry for improved organisation and governance,.

Khalid Biyari, appointed aide to the defence minister, left his post as chief executive of Saudi Telecom, a possible sign that the crown prince is tapping the private sector to implement reforms.

The decrees also included the appointment of three deputy governors from among the descendants of Princes Ahmed, Talal and Muqrin - brothers of King Salman.

One of them, new deputy governor of Asir province, Prince Turki bin Talal, is the brother of billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal.

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