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King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud Fast Facts

By CNN Library
October 8, 2014 -- Updated 1823 GMT (0223 HKT)
Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud speaks before a meeting with the US Secretary of State at his private residence on June 27, 2014 in the Red Sea city of Jeddah. US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Saudi Arabia to meet the Syrian opposition, a day after hosting urgent talks on Syria and Iraq in Paris, as Washington unveiled plans to provide some $500 million in arms and training to the Syrian rebels. AFP PHOTO / POOL / BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud speaks before a meeting with the US Secretary of State at his private residence on June 27, 2014 in the Red Sea city of Jeddah. US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Saudi Arabia to meet the Syrian opposition, a day after hosting urgent talks on Syria and Iraq in Paris, as Washington unveiled plans to provide some $500 million in arms and training to the Syrian rebels. AFP PHOTO / POOL / BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

(CNN) -- Here is a look at the life of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud.

Personal:
Birth date: August 1, 1924

Birth place: Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Father: King Abdulaziz bin Abdulrahman al Saud

Mother: Fahda bint Al-Asi Al-Shuraim

Marriages: Wives' names not available publicly, but according to Islamic tradition he is allowed no more than four at a time.

Children: Exact number is not available publicly; sons include: Khalid (eldest son died June 2011 at age 54); Mitab; Abdulaziz; Mishal; Faisal; Badr

Education: early education at the Royal Court

Religion: Wahhabism (a conservative Islamic sect)

Military: Commander of the Saudi Arabia's National Guard, 1962-2010

Other Facts:
Is one of 37 sons.

Is prime minister and head of state.

Helped create the Allegiance Authority, a committee of princes who vote on the eligibility of future monarchs and crown princes.

Under his leadership, Saudi Arabia joined the World Trade Organization.

Breeds pure Arabian horses and founded the equestrian club in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Speaks with a stutter.

Timeline:
1962-2010 - Commander of Saudi Arabia's National Guard.

1975-1982 - Is Saudi Arabia's second deputy prime minister.

1976 - During his first visit to the United States, he meets with President Gerald Ford.

June 13, 1982 - King Khalid dies and Fahd Bin Abdulaziz al Saud is named king of Saudi Arabia. He names his half-brother, Prince Abdullah, crown prince and successor.

1982-2005 - Deputy Prime Minister.

October 1987 - During his second visit to the United States, Crown Prince Abdullah meets with President George H.W. Bush.

March 1, 1992 - Is confirmed heir to the throne of Saudi Arabia by King Fahd.

November 1995 - King Fahd has a stroke, and Crown Prince Abdullah assumes his duties.

September 1998 - Meets with President Bill Clinton in the United States.

February 2002 - Proposes a comprehensive peace plan to address the violence in Jerusalem and other Israeli-Palestinian areas. It is the first such plan introduced by an Arab nation since 1947. This plan calls for full Arab recognition of Israel as a nation, and a complete withdrawal by Israel from territories gained since the 1967 war.

April 25, 2002 - Meets with President George W. Bush at the president's ranch in Crawford, Texas.

2004 - In a 2004 speech broadcast on Saudi television, Abdullah warns Saudi citizens not to support extremists who want to overthrow the ruling family, and vows to hunt them down, regardless of how long it takes.

August 1, 2005 - Becomes sixth king of Saudi Arabia following the death of King Fahd bin Abdulaziz al Saud. He chooses Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz el Saud as crown prince.

2008 - King Abdullah hosts President George W. Bush at the royal ranch in Jenadriyah.

February 2009 - Appoints Saudi Arabia's first female to the council of ministers.

November 13, 2010 - Transfers his position as commander of Saudi Arabia's National Guard to his son Prince Mitab bin Abdullah.

November 24, 2010 - Is in New York to undergo back surgery on a herniated disc and blood clot.

December 3, 2010 - Undergoes a follow-up surgery to stabilize several vertebrae in his spine.

September 25, 2011 - Announces that women can run for office and vote in local elections in 2015.

October 2011 - Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz al Saud dies. Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz al Saud is named crown prince.

October 2011 - Undergoes his third back surgery within a year, at a Riyadh hospital.

June 16, 2012 - Crown Prince Nayef dies.

June 18, 2012 - Abdullah's half-brother Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud is named crown prince.

November 2012 - Has his fourth back surgery since 2010, at a hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

January 11, 2013 - Appoints 30 women to the Shura Council, the first time women have been chosen for the country's top consultative body.

March 27, 2014 - Names former intelligence chief Prince Muqrin bin Abdulaziz as the deputy crown prince. Prince Muqrin follows Crown Prince Salman in the line of succession.

March 28, 2014 - Following King Abdullah's meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama in Saudi Arabia, a senior U.S. official says that the United States and Saudi Arabia are "very much aligned" despite recent policy differences over Iran and Syria.

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