Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa

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Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa
Khalifa ibn Salman Al Khalifa (cropped).jpg
Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa in 2010
1st Prime Minister of Bahrain
In office
10 January 1970 – 11 November 2020
PredecessorPosition established
SuccessorSalman bin Hamad Al Khalifa
Born(1935-11-24)24 November 1935
Jasra, Bahrain
Died11 November 2020(2020-11-11) (aged 84)
Rochester, Minnesota, U.S.
SpouseHessa bint Ali Al Khalifa
FatherSalman bin Hamad, Emir of Bahrain
MotherMouza bint Hamad Al Khalifa

Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa (Arabic: خليفة بن سلمان آل خليفة) (24 November 1935 – 11 November 2020)[1] was a Bahraini royal and politician who served as the Prime Minister of Bahrain from 10 January 1970 until his death in 2020. He took office over a year before Bahrain's independence on 15 August 1971.[2] He was the longest-serving prime minister in the world. Under the 2002 Constitution he lost some of his powers, with the King now having the authority to appoint and (along with the Bahraini parliament) dismiss ministers.

Prince Khalifa was also the paternal uncle of the reigning King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and grand-uncle of the Crown Prince Salman, since he was the younger brother of the previous Emir Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa.

Early life and education[edit]

Sheikh Khalifa (left) in 1962

Prince Khalifa was born on 24 November 1935, the second son of Salman ibn Hamad Al Khalifa, Hakim of Bahrain, and his wife Mouza bint Hamad Al Khalifa.[3][4] He was educated at Manama High School and the Rifa’a Palace School in Bahrain.


Prince Khalifa was a member of the education council from 1956 to 1958 and chair between 1958 and 1961. Next he became the director of the finance department (1961–1966), president of the electricity board (1961), chair of the Manama municipal council (1962–1967), head of the Bahrain monetary council (1964), chair of the joint committee for economic and financial studies, committee member for the register of commerce, then chairman of the administrative affairs council (1967–1969), became board member of the Bahrain monetary agency and then chairperson of the State Council (1972–1974), head of the State Council (1972), and head of the supreme defence council (1977).

Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa being received by Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in New Delhi, 2004

Prince Khalifa was appointed as prime minister by his brother Emir Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa, in 1971. Therefore, he was assigned the control of government and economy, while his brother, the Emir, was involved in diplomatic and ceremonial affairs.[5] Prince Khalifa received a World Peace Culture Award on 6 August 2017.

Prince Khalifa is the founder of the Housing Ministry, and he reformed the Central Bank of Bahrain.[4] During his premiership he was the head of the Oil and Economic Policy Council.[4]


In 2011, reporter Bill Law stated that Prince Khalifa was a hardliner, whereas Crown Prince Salman, his grandnephew who is also deputy prime minister, was a reformer and the King was somewhere in the middle of the two.[6]

Marriage and children[edit]

Prince Khalifa married his cousin Hessa bint Ali Al Khalifa,[7] the fourth daughter of Ali bin Hamad Al Khalifa[citation needed] in Muharraq. They had three sons and one daughter:

  • Mohammad bin Khalifa Al Khalifa (-1974).
  • Ali bin Khalifa Al Khalifa – Deputy Prime Minister. He married Zayn bint Khalid Al Khalifa with whom he has three sons and one daughter:
    • Khalifa bin Ali Al Khalifa
    • Isa bin Ali Al Khalifa
    • Minwa bint Ali Al Khalifa
    • Khalid bin Ali Al Khalifa
  • Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa
  • Lulwa bint Khalifa Al Khalifa – honorary president of the Al Noor beneficence society. She married Rashid bin Khalifa Al Khalifa (1952-), artist and patron of the arts. They have four sons and three daughters.
    • Noor bint Rashid Al Khalifa
    • Khalifa bin Rashid Al Khalifa
    • Hassa bint Rashid Al Khalifa
    • Abdulla bin Rashid Al Khalifa
    • Aysha bint Rashid Al Khalifa
    • Mohammed bin khlaifa Al Khalifa


Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa experienced various health problems. In September 2019, he went to Germany for treatment, and returned to Bahrain in March 2020.[4] He headed the cabinet last time in July 2020 and went to the US for treatment in August 2020.[4]

Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa died at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota on 11 November 2020 at the age of 84, 13 days before his 85th birthday.[8] Serving 50 years and 11 months in office, he was the world's longest serving prime minister in history at the time of his death.[9][10] Bahraini authorities have ordered a seven-day national mourning period with flags half-masted and government institutions closed for three days.[11] Bangladesh declared November 17 as the day of state mourning with flags half-masted.[12][13] He was buried at Hunainiyah Cemetery in Riffa on 11 November 2020.[14][15]


Foreign honours

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Ministry of Foreign Affairs". Archived from the original on 9 November 2019. Retrieved 25 November 2019.
  2. ^ [CIA World Factbook, 1999]
  3. ^ "H.R.H. the Prime Minister". Kingdom of Bahrain Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Archived from the original on 22 March 2017. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
  4. ^ a b c d e Hudhaifa Ebrahim (11 November 2020). "Bahraini PM Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Dead at 84". The Media Line. Retrieved 13 November 2020.
  5. ^ Steven Wright (2008). "Fixing the Kingdom: Political Evolution and Socio-Economic Challenges in Bahrain" (PDF). CIRS. Archived (PDF) from the original on 3 July 2012. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  6. ^ Bill Law (16 March 2011). "Splits inside Bahrain's ruling al-Khalifah family". BBC. Archived from the original on 11 June 2012. Retrieved 14 April 2013.
  7. ^ Gambrell, Jon. "Khalifa bin Salman al-Khalifa, Bahrain prime minister with checkered record, dies at 84". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 12 November 2020.
  8. ^ "Bahrain's longest serving prime minister, Prince Khalifa Al Khalifa, dies at 84". CNN. 11 November 2020.
  9. ^ "Bahrain's long-serving PM Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa dies". Al Jazeera.
  10. ^ "Khalifa bin Salman al Khalifa, leader of Bahrain's government, dies at 84". New York Times. 11 November 2020. Retrieved 16 January 2022.
  11. ^ "Bahrain: Authorities declare week-long mourning period following death of Prime Minister November 11".
  12. ^ "Bangladesh declares day-long state mourning over Bahrain PM's death | Bangladesh Live News".
  13. ^ "Bangladesh announces one-day mourning for Bahrain PM Sheikh Khalifa".
  14. ^ "Bahrain buries world's longest serving prime minister". Reuters. 13 November 2020. Retrieved 16 January 2022. Alternative URL
  15. ^ "Bahrain Roundup 2020: Death of Bahraini Prime Minister in the US". Bahrain Mirror. 5 January 2021. Retrieved 16 January 2022.
  16. ^ "Senarai Penuh Penerima Darjah Kebesaran, Bintang dan Pingat Persekutuan Tahun 2001" (PDF).
  17. ^ "The Order of Sikatuna | GOVPH".
  18. ^ "Boletín Oficial del Estado" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 3 October 2013. Retrieved 1 February 2015.

External links[edit]

Political offices
New office Prime Minister of Bahrain
Succeeded by