The emir of gas-rich Qatar, a major actor on the world diplomatic stage and key backer of Arab Spring uprisings, stepped down on Tuesday in favour of his 33-year-old son, Sheikh Tamim.
Photo combo of Qatar's emir Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani (L) and son Sheikh Tamim. Hamad has abdicated in favour of his 33-year-old son, in a first for the Arab world.
Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani's abdication after 18 years was a rarity in the Arab world, but analysts do not expect significant changes in the way the super-rich Gulf state is ruled.
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