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King Faisal bin Abdulaziz

BIOGRAPHY OF

KING FAISAL

King Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud was born in Riyadh in 1906. He is the third son of the Kingdom’s founder, King Abdulaziz bin Abdulrahman Al Saud. His mother, Tarfa bint Abdullah bin Abdullatif Al Sheikh, passed away when he was five months old. He was raised by his maternal grandmother, Haya Al Muqbil, at the house of his grandfather Abdullah bin Abdullatif, a descendant of Sheikh Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab. Under the guidance of his grandfather, Prince Faisal completed his study of reading the Qur’an at the age of nine, and studied Islamic law and doctrines. Prince Faisal also learned horse riding skills and politics from his father. He developed high morals and was known for his courage, civility, and intelligence since his childhood. At early ages, he was delegated by his father to represent him at international events, and he continued to serve his father, his nation, and his people throughout his life. He illuminated battlefields with his acumen and bravery, and halls of politics with his wisdom and determination. He followed in his father’s footsteps and opened his heart to people, remained fair with them, and firmly spoke the truth, so people loved him, respected him, and were awed by him. He made efforts by way of self-reflection, controlled his own instincts, and stayed humble in his heart. He triumphed with justice, so Allah saved him. He stood with the weak, deterred the evil, and walked with people, so he was trusted. Arab and Muslim people came to him for his faithful intentions and relied on his credible support. Prince Faisal spoke honestly and sincerely. He was not dazzled by the glamour of prestige, and he wore a robe of asceticism, which protected him from kings’ temptations. He ascended to glory deliberately and withstood grievance with patience. Allah chose him as a martyr, so his life, the story of which has been told with much love and longing, remained gracefully fragrant.
Turki Alfaisal
Chairman of the Board of Directors King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies

Turki Alfaisal

Chairman of the Board of Directors
King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies

KING FAISAL’S LIFE IN PICTURES

1919
Prince Faisal represented his father, King Abdulaziz, in his official visit to Britain at the age of thirteen.
1924
He wrote the first official statement about the Kingdom, which was published by Al Ahram newspaper in Egypt and made him the Kingdom’s first official spokesperson.
1926
In Makkah: He was appointed Viceroy of Hijaz.
1931
In Jeddah, as Viceroy of Hijaz.
1932
In Berlin, as Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia.
1945
During his visit to the USA, with Prince Khalid bin Abdulaziz and Minister Plenipotentiary Hafez Wahba.
1948
He addressed the Saudi people in a speech on the Palestinian cause and the misery of the Palestinian people.
1953
He was appointed Crown Prince by King Saud after the death of King Abdulaziz.
1955
In Cairo, as head of Saudi Arabia’s delegation, to participate in the talks for the Baghdad Pact with the leaders of the Arab states.
1955
In Cairo, at the Baghdad Pact meeting.
1964
He ascended to the throne.
1964
People in the Eastern Province pledging allegiance to King Faisal.
1968
In his official visit to Kuwait, welcomed by Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah.
1972
In his visit to Mauritania, with President of Mauritania Moktar Ould Daddah.
1975
The assassination of King Faisal (may God rest his soul) occurred on Tuesday March 25, 1975.
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Shortly after his ascension to the throne, King Saud appointed his brother (then) Crown Prince Faisal as Prime Minister. Faisal was the architect of reform, development, and modernization of Saudi Arabia in its new form after the death of its founder, King Abdulaziz. In 1962, Faisal presented to King Saud his plan known as the Ten Points of Reform.

THE TEN POINTS OF REFORM (ORIGINAL STATEMENT)

Since its foundation, the Saudi state has been enthusiastic about waging a purposeful battle for progress with all diligence and strength. Long years of sweat and blood have passed, during which the late King Abdulaziz—may Allah have mercy on him—walked a stony road. He waged fierce battles, after which he was able to establish this great, magnificent entity. Then, he laid the foundation of our awakening. Although the fruits of such foundational process are usually not seen immediately, and although our oil resources did not begin to flow until recently, the government of His Majesty King Saud, with his deliberate guidance, was able to benefit from this important resource and show its effects swiftly despite the distances within the Kingdom, the harsh nature of the desert, and the scarcity of qualified personnel. His Majesty’s government is pleased to announce the outcomes of this continuous, arduous effort. It is time for His Majesty’s government and citizens of this generous nation to reap the fruits of their efforts, and then continue reaping the fruits of other efforts. His Majesty’s government will double its effort to develop and support this young state and take people to where they deserve to be. Since the dawn of Arab history, people have been at the center of the launching of true Arabism and have been the source of radiation of the eternal Islamic civilization. In order to reap the fruits and double the effort to develop the nation, His Majesty’s government put in place an immense reform program, the most important elements of which can be summarized in the follow points:

First

Whereas the law of governance in any state must be a true image of the reality of the development its society has reached, His Majesty’s government has been eager to develop the Saudi society intellectually, culturally, and socially, until it reaches a level reflecting an image of the sophisticated law of governance that represents the magnificent and eternal goals brought forth by our honorable Sharia. From time to time, developments have occurred to the form of Saudi governance to represent the development of our society, and at the same time attempts have been made to take the hands of the society to a higher level. His Majesty’s government believes that the time has come to issue a basic law of governance derived from the Book of Allah, the Sunna of the Prophet (PBUH), and the life of his rightly guided successors. This law clearly sets out the basic principles of governance and the relationship between the ruler and the ruled, organizes different state authorities and their relations, and stipulates the basic rights of citizens, including their freedom of expression within the limits of Islamic belief and public order. The previous ministry embarked on developing the Shura Council, which assumes its role as a regulatory authority for the country. This study, with additions and modifications applied, shall form a part of the basic law of governance, which shall be promulgated soon. The law shall come as a true image of the honorable level our nation has reached and shall serve an excellent model for the Islamic law of governance derived from the texts and spirit of Sharia. The achievement of this noble goal is supported by the fact that the rules of our tolerant Sharia are flexible, developed, and effective for facing all circumstances and are applicable in every place and time in accordance with the requirements of such time and place.

Second

His Majesty’s government not only considered the basic law that sets out the rules of central governance but also carried out various studies to place a law for provinces that clarifies the method of local governance for different regions of the Kingdom. Various studies conducted for the project of the provincial law have been crystalized and shall be promulgated soon. Once issued, the law shall be an effective factor in advancing the administrative, political, and social development of our young Kingdom.

Second

His Majesty’s government not only considered the basic law that sets out the rules of central governance but also carried out various studies to place a law for provinces that clarifies the method of local governance for different regions of the Kingdom. Various studies conducted for the project of the provincial law have been crystalized and shall be promulgated soon. Once issued, the law shall be an effective factor in advancing the administrative, political, and social development of our young Kingdom.

Third

His Majesty’s government has been eager to ensure that the judiciary has its sanctity and status, as it is a subject of fairness and the symbol of justice. The higher its status and the greater its freedom, the more we will achieve through it a fundamental objective of the pillars of our true Islamic religion. We are determined to double efforts toward this goal and issue a law for judicial independence, the reins of which are held by the Supreme Judicial Council. We have also decided to establish the Ministry of Justice, which shall oversee the administrative affairs of the judiciary, to which the public prosecution office, which takes care of the interests of citizens and defends their rights, shall be attached. Through cooperation with the various courts of the state, the Ministry shall act as a trustful guardian that defends the oppressed and chastens the oppressor.

Fourth

The texts of the Qur’an and the Sunna are fixed and finalized, while the realities of the times and the affairs that emerge to the world of people are developing and unfinalized. And since our young state is establishing its governance—praise be to Allah—on the basis of the Qur’an and the Sunna in text and spirit, it is our obligation to pay great attention to the fatwa by our jurists and scholars: the Light of Guidance campaign—the positive and effective role in discussing emerging problems of the Ummah to reach solutions derived from Allah’s Sharia and the fulfillment of the interests of Muslims. Therefore, His Majesty’s government decided to establish the Fatwa Council, comprised of twenty members from a group of the best jurists and scholars, which shall examine issues that the state requests it to consider, as well as questions posed, and consultations solicited, by Muslim individuals. The Fatwa Council shall be a powerful instrument to enlighten minds and remove obstacles that hinder sound progress.

Fourth

The texts of the Qur’an and the Sunna are fixed and finalized, while the realities of the times and the affairs that emerge to the world of people are developing and unfinalized. And since our young state is establishing its governance—praise be to Allah—on the basis of the Qur’an and the Sunna in text and spirit, it is our obligation to pay great attention to the fatwa by our jurists and scholars: the Light of Guidance campaign—the positive and effective role in discussing emerging problems of the Ummah to reach solutions derived from Allah’s Sharia and the fulfillment of the interests of Muslims. Therefore, His Majesty’s government decided to establish the Fatwa Council, comprised of twenty members from a group of the best jurists and scholars, which shall examine issues that the state requests it to consider, as well as questions posed, and consultations solicited, by Muslim individuals. The Fatwa Council shall be a powerful instrument to enlighten minds and remove obstacles that hinder sound progress.

Fifth

His Majesty’s government fully recognizes its duty to work with all diligence and interest on spreading the call of Islam, consolidating its foundations, and defending it in word and deed. His Majesty’s government has worked, and will work, on adopting all means to achieve the fulfillment of this noble duty.

Sixth

The foremost characteristic of this glorious Islamic nation is that it promotes virtue and prevents vice among people. Because Islam requires this noble mission, Sharia indicates the virtue of the mission and the virtue of those who practice it and obligates us to call for the way of Allah with wisdom and sound advice and make an effort to fill people’s hearts with truth, goodwill, and love. For this reason, His Majesty’s government decided to reform the committees for the promotion of virtue and the prevention of vice in line with the noble goals for which they were established and for ensuring the eradication of evil motives from people’s hearts as much as we can.

Sixth

The foremost characteristic of this glorious Islamic nation is that it promotes virtue and prevents vice among people. Because Islam requires this noble mission, Sharia indicates the virtue of the mission and the virtue of those who practice it and obligates us to call for the way of Allah with wisdom and sound advice and make an effort to fill people’s hearts with truth, goodwill, and love. For this reason, His Majesty’s government decided to reform the committees for the promotion of virtue and the prevention of vice in line with the noble goals for which they were established and for ensuring the eradication of evil motives from people’s hearts as much as we can.

Seventh

His Majesty’s government finds it one of its most important duties to advance the social level of the nation. The state has played an important and effective role in this area. It has ensured that people be treated and dispensed medicine free of charge inside and outside the Kingdom. It also has made education free of charge at all stages, granted many students generous financial rewards to help them meet the requirements of life, and sent thousands of students all over the world to study in the various fields of science and knowledge. It has also exempted many foodstuffs from custom duties and granted large subsidies to reduce the price of food for consumers. Finally, the social security system has made the state fully responsible for the livelihood of all the elderly, the disabled, orphans, and families with no income or legal breadwinner. It will not take long before the state will reach out to all needy people with that which is sufficient for them and ensure them a decent life. When the state provides workers with a system that protects them from unemployment, we will have reached a social level that remains but a dream in many civilized states and will have effectively achieved the true goals of social justice without the state oppressing the individual freedoms of people or robbing them of their capital and rights. His Majesty’s government not only will facilitate sufficiency for its people and secure job opportunities for them but also will strive to make important adjustments to the form of social life and to provide all citizens with means of recreation.

Eighth

His Majesty’s government believes that economic, commercial, and social development, which has prevailed in our society in recent years, still lacks organization in many areas. Therefore, large sets of important regulations will be prepared for issuance one by one so that the state, after not a long time, will have a comprehensive organizational legacy that supports the progress of activity, the speed of movement, and the attraction of capital. The state will establish independent authorities to issue and implement various regulations. All these will be in line with the eternal Sharia of Allah and will fulfill the greatest interests of the Ummah.

Eighth

His Majesty’s government believes that economic, commercial, and social development, which has prevailed in our society in recent years, still lacks organization in many areas. Therefore, large sets of important regulations will be prepared for issuance one by one so that the state, after not a long time, will have a comprehensive organizational legacy that supports the progress of activity, the speed of movement, and the attraction of capital. The state will establish independent authorities to issue and implement various regulations. All these will be in line with the eternal Sharia of Allah and will fulfill the greatest interests of the Ummah.

Ninth

As for financial rehabilitation and economic development, these are both the duty of the government. In addition to the strong financial position that distinguishes the Kingdom from other countries of the world, His Majesty’s government has taken, and will take, important and decisive measures to put in place tangible reform programs that result in the permanent recovery of economic movement, so that the Kingdom enjoys a high standard of living for all its citizens. One of the important announcements that will be made soon—if Allah so wills—is of an immense program for roads connecting all parts of the Kingdom and its cities with one another. And tens of millions of riyals will be spent on studies for water resources and on providing water for both agriculture and drinking. The government will build dams, which are necessary for preserving rainwater and providing pastureland. The government also will provide the light and heavy industries with effective support to protect them and attract capital to them. With the help of Allah, the Saudi Kingdom will be an industrialized state soon and will have achieved agricultural self-sufficiency so that the sources of its income will be diversified, helping the Kingdom carry out its duties toward its honorable people. In addition to the amounts allocated for implementing the projects in the state budget, His Majesty’s government has decided to allocate all additional amounts it will receive from Aramco—from the allotment in the special production budget that have been reclaimed by the company over the past years—to spend on development projects such as roads, dams, and public facilities, among other things. This work will be a strong boost to the Kingdom’s economy and will speedily materialize many construction projects. Also, currently the final phases of studies on establishing an industrial bank and an agricultural bank are under way. And the General Organization for Petroleum and Minerals will come into existence soon. These three institutions, along with other governmental and private institutions, will be conducive to showing the country’s well-being and unveiling its mineral wealth.

Tenth

It is known that the Islamic Sharia urges to set slaves free. It is also known that the slavery in the present era differs from many conditions of Sharia that Islam prescribed for the permissibility of slavery. Since its establishment, the Saudi state has faced the problem of slavery and slaves and has worked on the eradication of slavery with all gradual means. Initially it banned the importation of slaves and imposed penalties on their importation. Then recently it prohibited the sale or purchase of slaves. Now the government finds a favorable opportunity to announce the absolute abolishment of slavery and the emancipation of all slaves. The government will compensate those who are proven to deserve compensation.

Tenth

It is known that the Islamic Sharia urges to set slaves free. It is also known that the slavery in the present era differs from many conditions of Sharia that Islam prescribed for the permissibility of slavery. Since its establishment, the Saudi state has faced the problem of slavery and slaves and has worked on the eradication of slavery with all gradual means. Initially it banned the importation of slaves and imposed penalties on their importation. Then recently it prohibited the sale or purchase of slaves. Now the government finds a favorable opportunity to announce the absolute abolishment of slavery and the emancipation of all slaves. The government will compensate those who are proven to deserve compensation.

***
This is a set of basic measures His Majesty’s government is determined to implement. Doubtless there are many issues that are of interest to this government. All announcements will be made at the right times as we ask Allah to guide all our steps and conform us to his wishes. After the Cabinet agreed on what is stated in this honorable statement, the formation of the two committees was decided. The first committee prepares the basic law of governance, and the other undertakes the preparation of the law for judiciary independence; both are mentioned in this honorable statement.

From the words of King Faisal

"Arm yourselves with science"
"Our youth education is based on three pillars: belief, science and work"
“We want this Kingdom to be a beacon of light for humanity, now and fifty years from now.”
"We are not the ones who say, 'We will work, but we are used to God's power to say: We have worked."
"If I were not a king, I would be a teacher"

CONTACT

King Faisal Center for Research & Islamic Studies
P.O. Box 51049
Riyadh 11543
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Tel: + 966 11 465 22 55 Ext: 6060
Fax: +966 11 465 99 93
Email: kfcris@kfcris.com
Information Services: is@kfcris.com

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