King Faisal bin Abdulaziz on a Turkish stamp – 1966
In 1966, King Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud visited Istanbul in his effort to unite muslim countries. The Turkish post issued a stamp with the portrait of the king to commemorate the visit.
This was not the first visit of the King Faisal to Turkey. In 1932 he visited the country representing his father King Abdulaziz Al Saud and met with then president Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.
Pictured below, King Faisal is seen at a dinner hosted by Turkish President Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in his honor.
King Faisal bin Abdul Aziz is the third king of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He took power in 1964 after his father, King Abdulaziz Al Saud, the founder of the Kingdom, and his brother King Saud bin Abdul Aziz.
Economic development during the reign of King Faisal bin Abdulaziz
The reign of King Faisal of Saudi Arabia was marked by a period of economic development, as the king played a distinguished role in extricating the kingdom from the financial hardship that it suffered during the era of his predecessor. King Faisal has imposed a review of contracts with companies extracting oil to ensure the kingdom gets a fairer share.
King Faisal laid down the country’s five-year plans, the system of administrative regions, and brought in foreign consulting companies to support the state’s service institutions. He also took an interest in industry, agriculture, establishment of projects, and land investment. He also launched projects to search for mineral resources and sources of safe drinking water.
King Faisal also laid the foundations for a network of power plants, foundations for the petrochemical industries, iron and steel, cement, and mining, and supported sending students to the West on scholarship, in preparation for supporting the industrial projects.
King Faisal and the Palestinian cause
In terms of foreign policy, King Faisal was one of the most vocal defenders of the rights of the Palestinian people in international forums, and he insisted on rejecting the decision to partition Palestine and recognize the state of Israel.
Despite the differences between him and Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser, after the 1967 war and the Arab summit conference in Khartoum, he pledged to provide annual financial aid until the effects of the war on Egypt disappeared. During the October 1973 War, King Faisal decided with several Arab countries to cut off oil exportations in protest against the bias of Western countries towards Israel in its wars against the Arab countries.
Despite the passage of 45 years since his death, King Faisal still enjoys great respect in his country and throughout the Arab and Islamic world.