A major reshuffle in the cabinet of Saudi Arabia, by HRH King Abdullah has resulted in the appointment of a Saudi woman as the Deputy Education Minister- the most senior role ever held by a female in the kingdom.

The reshuffle, the first one of its kind since King Abdullah’s succession to the throne after the death of King Fahad in 2005, has also led to the expulsion of the head of the Commission for Prevention of Vice and Promotion of Virtue (commonly known as the Hay’aa or Mutawwa).

Sheikh Salah al-Luhaidan, the out-going head of the Supreme Judicial Council, was known for his infamous comment of “death to broadcasters”.

In her first message to the press after her appoinment as the deputy minister, Norah Al-Faiz, highlighted that her appointment is dedicated to all the Saudi women and mentioned that the King is confident in her and all the Saudi women. She was awarded the Bachelor’s degree in Arts from Kind Saudi University (Riyadh, KSA) and did her Masters degree in Education in Utah State University (USA).

Another major appointment is the Minister of Health. Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabea, is a senior surgeon in the National Guard Hospital. He led the team of surgeons that have performed several successful operations to seperate conjoined twins from around the world. A total of 10 pairs of twins were seperated under his supervision, and all of them are surviving and leading normal life.

Since 1990, Dr Al-Rabea and his 25-member medical team have performed several successful operations to separate conjoined twins from countries around the world, including Saudi Arabia (three sets of twins), Sudan (two sets), Egypt (two sets), Malaysia (one set), the Philippines (one set) and Poland (one set).

Report from Saudi Gazette

It is to be noted that all the operations were fully sponsored by King Abdullah and all of them were invited to the Kingdom for the operation.

Further Reading:
Al Jazeera
BBC

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