Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah today celebrates a glorious nine years as leader of Saudi Arabia, marked by unprecedented economic growth and social development, and far-reaching regional and international peace initiatives.
Saudi citizens pledged their allegiance to the King on Jamad Al-Thani 26, 1426, corresponding to Aug. 1, 2005.
The Kingdom’s major achievements under King Abdullah’s leadership include several major economic, social and education projects across the country.
Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, commended King Abdullah for his integrity, frankness and nonpartisan approach to international issues, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Friday.
“We have seen outstanding achievements benefiting citizens year after year. This includes the enactment of legislation ensuring more stability and prosperity in the country. We have also seen the king take bold and courageous positions on Arab and Muslim issues,” Prince Salman said in a statement.
Prince Salman said the king’s greatest desire is to see citizens united, particularly on issues affecting the country’s security and economic stability. He said this was vital for the country’s progress and development.
Under King Abdullah, Saudi Arabia has become a member of the G20 group of nations, which brings together some of the world’s most economically advanced countries.
Earlier this week, the king received another honor when he was awarded the Sheikh Zayed Book Prize’s Cultural Personality Award for 2014, in recognition of his humanitarian and cultural contributions in the country and abroad.
The king’s vision and wisdom have strengthened the role of Saudi Arabia in the Arab and Islamic world and globally.
Internally, the Kingdom’s major accomplishments in every city and province have promoted unity and cohesion among the people and the country’s leadership.
King Abdullah has established several economic cities, increased the number of universities from eight to almost 40, and opened colleges, technical and health institutes, and faculties of education for females.
He also built the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology and the Princess Noura University for Women.
He has also played a singular important role in making sure women participate in the country’s social, economic, political and cultural life. He ensured that the Shoura Council appointed 30 women as members, and for them to participate in the upcoming municipal council elections for the first time in the Kingdom’s history.
Deputy Crown Prince Muqrin, deputy premier and advisor to the King, said King Abdullah’s love for citizens has been expressed in his orders for provincial governors to find quick solutions for any complaints filed by them.
President of the Two Holy Mosques Affairs Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais congratulated the King for his significant support to expand the two holy mosques and the holy sites, for Umrah and Haj pilgrims.
Makkah Gov. Prince Mishaal bin Abdullah congratulated the king and praised him for always being concerned about the rights and welfare of Saudi citizens.
Interior Minister Prince Muhammad bin Naif said that the King’s foresight and wisdom has seen the Kingdom take major strides in the region, Arab world, and across the globe.
Prince Sultan bin Salman, president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities, praised the King for his devotion to citizens and his tireless efforts to maintain stability in the country.
Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal underlined several efforts launched by King Abdullah to provide aid to the oppressed Syrian people, restore the rights of the Palestinians, and initiatives to boost the progress and development of Muslim countries and communities across the world. Education Minister Prince Khaled Al-Faisal commended the king for developing the country. This includes his efforts in education such as the King Abdullah Project for General Education Development (Tatweer), aimed at the intellectual enhancement of students.
Joseph Westphal, US ambassador to Saudi Arabia, expressed his warmest congratulations and best wishes to King Abdullah.
“It gives me great pleasure to congratulate King Abdullah and the Saudi people on this wonderful and joyous occasion,” he said.
“Under King Abdullah’s leadership, the enduring and strategic ties between the United States and Saudi Arabia have continued to deepen. Our two nations are working together to confront regional challenges such as Syria, Iran, Egypt, and Yemen, even as we pursue Middle East peace.”
“Both of our nations act to bring stability to global energy markets. And we welcome the tens of thousands of young Saudis studying in the US. We commend King Abdullah for his far-sighted leadership and look forward to continuing our cooperation for the benefit of both the American and Saudi people.”