Abdullah bin Faisal Al Saud

Abdullah bin Faisal Al Saud was a Saudi businessman and a senior member of the House of Saud. He held several cabinet posts in the government of Saudi Arabia in the 1950s and was the first Minister of Interior in Saudi Arabian history.

Early life and education

Prince Abdullah was born in Riyadh in 1923. He was the eldest son of King Faisal. His mother was Sultana Al Sudairi, daughter of Ahmed bin Muhammad Al Sudairi. Abdullah bin Faisal's mother and the mother of the Sudairi Seven, Hussa bint Ahmed Al Sudairi, were sisters. It is believed that Prince Abdullah was the second grandson of King Abdulaziz after Faisal bin Turki I, who was born in 1918. The marriage of Prince Faisal and Sultana bint Ahmed was prearranged while Prince Faisal was travelling abroad. They never saw each other until the marriage. She also bore him three daughters. They later divorced.
Abdullah bin Faisal completed his education in Mecca in 1939. He was older than the majority of King Abdulaziz's children i.e. his uncles and aunts.


Abdullah bin Faisal assumed a number of government positions. He started his political career in 1945 when he disputed his half-uncle Mansour's appointment as acting viceroy of Hijaz and actually assumed the office one year later.
He served as the minister of health from 1949 to 1950. Then, he was appointed minister of interior in 1951, being the first interior minister of the Kingdom. He served in this post during the reign of King Abdulaziz and also, of King Saud. His term lasted until 1959 when he resigned. His appointment as minister of health and of interior was a move to make him equal in status to then-minister of defense Prince Mishaal.
Abdullah bin Faisal later left his government job to devote his time to business and cultural activities. First he dealt with real estate business in Jeddah. He was the founder of Al Faisaliah Group, which was established in Jeddah in 1970. He also founded the SIGMA company in 1979. The chairman and CEO of the company was his son, Prince Saud, who passed away in June 2020.
Abdullah bin Faisal received a number of international honors including an honorary doctorate degree in humanities. He was rewarded with the State Acknowledgement Award for Literature in 1984. A composer of both classical and colloquial poetry, his works include the collection The Inspiration of Deprivation, 1980. A number of singers have sung his poems, including the famous Egyptian singer, Um Kulthoum.
He was formerly chairman of Al-Ahli Club.


His publications include:
Prince Abdullah's poems were put into music and sung by the Egyptian singer Umm Khalthoum and many others.

Personal life

Prince Abdullah had 9 sons and 1 daughter:
Prince Abdullah died on 8 May 2007. Funeral prayers were performed at the Masjid al Haram in Mecca and attended by late Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz, his younger brothers late Prince Saud and Prince Khaled as well as other members of the royal family. Prince Abdullah was buried in the Al Adl cemetery in Mecca.