Kuwait\'s Emir Asks Crown Prince to Form New Cabinet
Kuwait's emir on Sunday asked Crown Prince and Prime Minister, Sheikh Saad Abdullah al-Sabah, to form a new government, amid increasing pressure for radical political reforms in the Gulf state, reported AFP.
Sheikh Saad, 71, has already headed 10 successive Kuwaiti governments since 1978, but due to his health problems, political groups have called for a separation in the posts of crown prince and head of government, said the agency.
The emir, Sheikh Jaber al-Ahmad al-Sabah, last week accepted the cabinet's resignation, which was submitted by Sheikh Saad due to "obstacles hindering the government's functioning."
On Saturday, Sheikh Jaber al-Ahmad al-Sabah, held talks with the current speaker of parliament, Jassem al-Khorafi, and four former speakers as part of "traditional consultations" to form a new cabinet, reported the Kuwaiti News Agency (KUNA).
The emir also met Sheikh Saad and foreign minister, Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah, before he issues a decree appointing a new premier, said the agency.
Khorafi said he had "a fruitful meeting" with the emir, but declined to provide any details, said the agency.
Khorafi last Monday called for a government with a new vision to resolve Kuwait's problems.
A loose coalition of opposition groups, called the Political Forces, held three consultation meetings during the week to draw a unified strategy toward the government, said AFP.
Defense minister, Sheikh Salem al-Sabah, an elder statesman of the ruling al-Sabah family, said Thursday he wanted to be omitted from the next cabinet.
Analysts said that although Sheikh Saad is the nominee for premiership, he will have to delegate his extensive powers, primarily to his deputy, Sheikh Sabah, added the agency.
Sheikh Saad fell ill in July 1999 with low blood-sugar levels, after undergoing colon surgery in early 1997, and spent several months abroad recovering.
Meanwhile, Sheikh Saad Saturday held talks with Emirati President, Sheikh Zayed al-Nahyan in Abu Dhabi, reported the Emirati News Agency (WAM).
Both sides discussed ways of enhancing bilateral ties between the two countries, said the agency -- Albawaba.com
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