Saudi king names new governor for restive oil region
- Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah appointed a former diplomat to run its most sensitive region on Monday, naming Prince Saud bin Nayef as governor of oil-producing Eastern Province, scene of protests by the kingdom's Shi'ite Muslim minority.
The appointment gives Prince Saud, who was born in 1956, a senior government job at a moment when the ruling al-Saud family is making a transition towards a younger generation of leaders.
The Eastern Province has seen repeated anti-government demonstrations over the past two years by Shi'ite Muslim protesters calling for more political rights and the release of jailed relatives.
"Prince Mohamad bin Fahad bin Abdulaziz is relieved of his duties as the governor of the Eastern Province, upon his request, and Prince Saud bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz...is appointed governor of the Eastern province," said a Royal Court decree carried by state news agency SPA.