Statement by Secretary of Defense Panetta on the Death of Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud

Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)–October 22, 2011.  

I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Saudi Arabia’s deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud.  During the nearly fifty years that Prince Sultan led the Ministry of Defense and Aviation, he transformed the Armed Forces of Saudi Arabia into a modern and highly capable military.  He was a good friend and partner of the United States, and worked to further cooperation between our two militaries in order to better confront many shared security challenges.  At this time of loss, I’d like to extend my condolences to the people of Saudi Arabia, and to the family of Prince Sultan.  He leaves behind a lasting legacy, and a strong relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia that will endure in the years to come.