New Kuwaiti crown prince Sheikh Mishal took a constitutional oath, where he pledged to “respect the constitution and laws of the State”. Image Credit: Official Twitter account of National Assembly

Kuwait City: Sheikh Mishal took a constitutional oath where he pledged to “respect the constitution and laws of the State”.

Kuwait’s National Assembly unanimously approved Sheikh Mishal Al Ahmed Al Jaber Sabah as Crown Prince on Thursday.

On Wednesday, the Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Nawaf Al Ahmed Al Sabah nominated Sheikh Mishal as his crown prince.

According to the Kuwaiti constitution, the Emir’s nomination for crown prince must be approved by the National Assembly.

The Emir’s selection of Sheikh Mishal as his crown prince was, “blessed by the Al Sabah family,” Kuwait’s state news agency, KUNA, said.

On behalf of the government, Prime Minister, Sabah Al Khaled Al Sabah, delivered a speech where he described Sheikh Mishal as a person who is known for his firmness, seriousness and strict adherence to the law.

Sheikh Mishal, deputy of the National Guard, stated that, “Kuwait retains its Gulf, regional and international commitments.”

Similar to the new Emir, Sheikh Mishal has been active in enhancing the security and defence position of Kuwait, as well as other Arab states. Sheikh Mishal has kept a low profile and has denied several key political positions, according to experts.

As the former Crown Prince, Sheikh Nawaf assumed power a few hours after the late Emir, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, passed away last Tuesday at age 91. After assuming the position of Emir, Sheikh Nawaf was tasked with appointing his crown prince. There were various questions on social media as to who the new crown prince would be.

Although the Kuwaiti constitution stipulates that the crown prince must be nominated within a year from when a new Emir takes his post, Sheikh Nawaf nominated his crown prince within a week. The late Emir, Sheikh Sabah, nominated his crown prince, Sheikh Nawaf, nine days after he became Emir.

The speaker of the National Assembly, Marzouq Al Ghanim, declared that the appointment of Sheikh Mishal as crown prince goes to show Kuwait’s, “calm and smooth transfer of power.”

Who is Sheikh Mishal?

Sheikh Mishal Al Ahmed, 80, is the half brother of Sheikh Nawaf and the seventh son of Sheikh Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah.

Traditionally, the position of Emir and Crown Prince has been held by the Al Salem and Al Jaber branches of the Al Sabah family.

Before becoming the deputy chief of the National Guard in 2004, he held several positions in the Ministry of Interior.

The National Guard is seen as a governmental body that is outside the realm of daily Kuwaiti politics. As both the Emir and Crown Prince come from a defense and security background, they are likely to tackle domestic issues, especially as Kuwait is preparing for an upcoming parliamentary election.

In 1960, Sheikh Mishal graduated with a degree from the Hendon Police College in London.

As the late Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Sabah’s half brother, he accompanied him to the United States as he was undergoing medical treatment.