Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan has been named president of the United Arab Emirates, succeeding his father who died Tuesday.

The decision was taken by the Supreme Council, hours after world leaders gathered in Abu Dhabi to pay final tribute to Sheikh Zayed, the 86-year-old leader who died after a lengthy illness. The council consists of leaders of seven constituent emirates that make up the UAE

Sheikh Khalifa, who has been Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi since 1969, was first in line for the presidency on his father's death. He has served as the director of oil policy in the oil-rich Emirates.

Earlier Wednesday, presidents and rulers from across the Arabic world gathered in an Abu Dhabi mosque named for the late Sheikh Zayed. Thousands of grieving Emiratis participated in Islamic prayers for the dead before burial at the mosque.