U.A.E. President in Stable Condition After Suffering Stroke

The president of the United Arab Emirates, the second-biggest Arab economy, is in stable condition after having a stroke, according to state-run WAM news agency.

Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan suffered a stroke on the morning of Jan. 24, WAM reported yesterday, citing a statement from the Ministry of Presidential Affairs. “He immediately underwent a surgical operation. His health is now stable.”

Born in 1948, Sheikh Khalifa is the eldest son of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, one of the founders of the seven-emirate U.A.E. and ruler of oil-rich Abu Dhabi. He became president in 2004 after his father’s death.

His brother, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, is the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi. In recent years, Sheikh Mohammed has been at the forefront of the U.A.E.’s foreign policy and has led efforts for closer economic and financial integration with Dubai, the U.A.E’s second-biggest emirate and financial hub.

Sheikh Khalifa was named deputy prime minister of the first federal cabinet after the U.A.E. was founded in 1971. He became deputy commander-in-chief in 1976, according to the Abu Dhabi government’s website. He assumed the leadership of the Supreme Petroleum Council in the late 1980s. The U.A.E. is the third-largest producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.

Sheikh Khalifa is also chairman of Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, one of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds with about $627 billion of assets, according to the website of the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute in California.

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