The President of the UAE, Sheikh Khalifa, has died.
The news was announced on Friday afternoon by state news agency Wam.
The Ministry of Presidential Affairs announced that there will be 40 days of official mourning with flags at half mast, and three days closure of ministries and official entities at the federal and local levels, and the private sector.
In a statement published by Wam, the Ministry of Presidential Affairs expressed its condolences to the people of the UAE, Arab and Islamic nations and the world on the death of the leader of the nation and the guardian of its journey, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the country.
There was no immediate announcement about the successor.
Sheikh Khalifa, who has rarely been seen in official photos or at public events for years, succeeded his father and the UAE’s founder Sheikh Zayed in 2004. He suffered a stroke a decade later, keeping him largely out of public sight ever since.
The world’s tallest tower in the UAE’s emirate of Dubai is named the Burj Khalifa after the late ruler.