Saudi Arabia’s royal court says Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman underwent “successful appendix surgery” on Wednesday and left the hospital shortly after the operation
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman underwent a “successful operation” to remove his appendix on Wednesday, a royal court said, and left the hospital shortly after the operation.
The 35-year-old prince was operated on in the morning for appendicitis at the King Faisal specialist hospital in the Saudi capital Riyadh, according to the royal court. In the official statement, the operation was described as laparoscopic, which means that no major incision was made.
Late Wednesday, Saudi state media published footage of the heir to the throne, surrounded by an escort dressed in traditional checkered blankets, exiting a fluorescently lit hospital in a black Mercedes.
Prince Mohammed, the son of King Salman, has gained immense power in the kingdom since he was appointed heir to the throne in 2017.
Its rapid rise, brazen unpredictability, and ambitious efforts to liberalize a deeply conservative society and reverse the economy have shattered a decades-long tradition, attracting international attention and criticism. He sided with rivals to consolidate power and set out to end all disagreements.
As part of his efforts to diversify the kingdom’s oil-dependent economy, state media reported earlier Wednesday that Saudi sovereign wealth is investing $ 3 billion in a new project: transforming the southwestern province near the war-torn kingdom of Yemen into a major tourist destination.
The Saudi Public Investment Fund wants to build up to 2,700 hotel rooms and 1,300 homes, along with other “entertainment and tourism” projects, in the Asir mountain region, the official Saudi news agency reported.
Under the so-called Vision 2030 program, Prince Mohammed aims to make tourism contribute 10% of Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic product. The campaign to attract visitors and foreign investment has dissipated in recent months amid a growing pandemic, putting pressure on the national budget.