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Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah
Emir of Kuwait

(1937–2023)


Biographical

Emir of Kuwait 2020-23†
Crown Prince of Kuwait 2006–23
His Highness 2006
Grand Cross of the Order of the Aztec Eagle 2016 [Mexico]
Grand Cross of the Order of the Liberator General San Martin 2011 [Argentina]
Grand Collar of the Order of the State of Palestine 2008 (Palestine)
Grand Cross of the Civil Merit 2008 [Spain]
Order of Zayed 2007 [United Arab Emirates]

First Deputy Prime Minister 2003–06
Minister of Social Affairs and Labour 1991–92
Minister of Defence 1988–91, 1992–94
Minister of the Interior 1978–88, 2003–06
Governor of Hawali 1962–78

Nawaf was installed as emir after the death of Sabah IV, in 2020, who had governed for over a decade. The region mourned the loss of Sheikh Sabah, renowned for his diplomatic skills and peacemaking efforts. Nawaf, previously Kuwait's interior and defence minister, was not highly involved in governance beyond those roles. Despite his age raising concerns about the length of his reign, he was widely accepted as emir without much controversy. Since taking office, Nawaf maintained a foreign policy balancing relations with the United States, while eight governments formed domestically under his leadership. Experts observed that Nawaf and his crown prince, Meshal, were moving Kuwait closer to Saudi Arabia. Before delegating most of his duties to his chosen successor, Nawaf attempted to ease domestic political tensions by granting amnesty to long-sought-after dissidents. However, political deadlock persisted after his death in 2023, prompting Meshal to dissolve parliament and call for early elections in an effort to quell political disputes.

Place of birth: Dar al-Yamamah Palace, Farij Al-Shuyukh, Kuwait City
Place of death: Kuwait City
Place of burial: Sulaibikhat Cemetery

Son of Ahmad Al-Sabah, Emir of Kuwait, and Yamama N. He married Sharifa Al-Ghanim, and had issue.


 




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