Diplomats paid their condolences on the death of Crown Prince Naif at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Jeddah yesterday.
Director-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mohammed Al-Tayeb welcomed them.
He said: “We are gathered today on a very sad occasion for Saudi citizens and the Islamic and Arab world.
“I think we can all agree that Prince Naif touched our hearts at one point.
“He was a statesman and held leading positions, especially in the Interior Ministry.”
Prince Naif was a symbol and the reason there was security and stability in the Kingdom for the past 40 years, according to Al-Tayeb.
“Losing him was a shock and a surprise but this is God’s will and we can only accept that.
“We can only wish that God places him in heaven and whoever comes after him will walk the same path he did and follow his leadership.”
Al-Tayeb said he only met Prince Naif when he was working in the Saudi Embassy in Paris.
He said: “He always had a unique presence in all political lectures, meetings and summits he attended.
“One could always notice his pride when he spoke about his country and his religion.
“He always spoke about the Saudi position when it came to issues such as Palestine and other Arab and Islamic issues.”
Al-Tayeb congratulated Prince Salman on succeeding Prince Naif and told Arab News he wished him the best of luck.
He said: “Prince Salman is also a statesman and is very experienced in general management as he has managed and served the country since he was young. “He was Riyadh’s governor for more than 50 years and also Civil Defense minister; now he is a crown prince and we all wish he will continue his path in serving Saudi Arabia.”