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Princess Haya and Dubai ruler begin London court battle von OBC News   4 months ago


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The ruler of Dubai, one of the most high-profile leaders in the Middle East, and his estranged wife are beginning a court battle in London over the welfare of their children.

Sheikh Mohammed al-Maktoum's wife, Princess Haya Bint al-Hussein, is the third female member of his court to run away from the United Arab Emirates.

[News taken from BBC. All clips may not represent the story. Watch to become bilingual as this video is specially made for English learners.]

This month she was reported to be in hiding in London in fear for her life.

The UK court case centres around their children, with whom she fled.

Princess Haya, who was born in Jordan and educated at private schools in Britain, is an Olympic equestrian and the half-sister of the current Jordanian ruler, King Abdullah II.

She married Sheikh Mohammed in 2004, becoming his sixth and "junior" wife. The 70-year-old sheikh, who is the billionaire owner of Godolphin horse racing stables, reportedly has 23 children by different wives.

Princess Haya initially fled to Germany to try and seek asylum there, but it emerged this month that she was living in central London - specifically, in an £85m ($107m) town house in Kensington Palace Gardens.

It's believed that Princess Haya will want to stay in the UK. However, if her husband demands her return to Dubai, this could cause a diplomatic headache for Britain - which has close ties to the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

After she fled, Sheikh Mohammed wrote an angry poem accusing an unnamed woman of betrayal and treachery, and posted it on his Instagram page.

Why is Princess Haya said to have run away?
Sources close to the princess said earlier this month that she had recently discovered disturbing facts about the mysterious return to Dubai last year of Sheikha Latifa, one of Sheikh Mohammed's daughters.

Sheikha Latifa had escaped the UAE by sea with the help of a Frenchman, but was intercepted by armed men off the coast of India. She was then returned to Dubai.

At the time, Princess Haya defended Dubai's reputation over the incident, claiming that Shiekha Latifa had been "vulnerable to exploitation" and was "now safe in Dubai". Human rights advocates said she was abducted against her will.

However later, sources alleged that Princess Haya had become aware of new information related to the case, and as a result came under increasing pressure from her husband's extended family.

[The following biography taken from Wikipedia:]

Princess Haya bint Hussein was born on 3 May 1974. She is the daughter of King Hussein of Jordan and his third wife Queen Alia, and the half-sister of King Abdullah II. She married the ruler of the Emirate of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, in 2004, becoming his sixth and "junior wife". She is known internationally as Princess Haya of Jordan.

He had her graduation from Oxford University in England. She is an accomplished equestrian, representing Jordan at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. She is the two-term President of the International Federation for Equestrian Sports. In addition, she engages in a variety of charitable activities.

In June 2019, it was reported that she had left her husband and fled Dubai with her children, and was seeking asylum in the United Kingdom.

She was born in Amman, the capital of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. She has a younger brother, Prince Ali bin Hussein and younger sister, Abir Muhaisen. However, her sister was adopted after her biological mother was killed by a plane crash at their Palestinian refugee camp in Amman. At that time she was 3 years old. Her father died from complications related to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 1999. leaving the crown to her half-brother, King Abdullah II.

She was educated in the United Kingdom, where she attended Badminton School for Girls in Bristol, Bryanston School in Dorset and later St Hilda's College, Oxford University, from which she graduated with a BA honours degree in philosophy, politics, and economics.

On 10 April 2004, Princess Haya wed Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. The marriage ceremony was held at al-Baraka Palace in Amman.

On 26 September 2014, She was awarded "Officer of the National Order of the Legion of Honour" which is France’s highest distinction. And, 22 January 2015, she was also awarded "Hunger Hero" by UN World Food Programme in Davos, Switzerland.

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[This is mainly for current news and for learning English. So, for learning English and better understanding, the hard coded subtitles have also been added in this video.]