Latifa bint Mohammed Al Maktoum, the princess of Dubai, United Arab Emirates, who has disappeared from the public eye for nearly three years, has recently reappeared.
The BBC broadcast a video allegedly secretly filmed by Latifah on the 16th.
She claimed that she was imprisoned in a “villa converted into a prison” without access to medical services.
Screenshots of the video allegedly taken secretly by Latifah broadcast by the BBC.
Latifa, 35 years old, is the daughter of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates and the chief of Dubai, who did not appear in public after unsuccessful attempts to escape in 2018. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights said that it would soon question the UAE about Latifah’s suspected imprisonment.
“No sunshine for months”
CNN reported on the 17th that Latifah tried to escape abroad by yacht at the end of February 2018.
People who helped her escape said that the yacht was intercepted by armed men in the waters near India, and Latifah was eventually taken back to Dubai.
The United Arab Emirates lives richly, but women are much restricted. In a video recorded before the escape, Latifah said that he could not drive, travel or leave Dubai at all.
The BBC Panorama broadcast the documentary “The Lost Princess” on the 16th local time, which included several video clips, in which Latifah hid in the locked bathroom, pale, puffy and frightened.
She whispered in English, “I’m a hostage. The villa was converted into a prison. All the windows are closed, and I can’t open a single window. I was alone, solitary confinement, no medical care, no trial, no charges, nothing.”
“I don’t know when I can be released, and what will happen after my release.
I worry about my safety and life every day. I really don’t know if I can survive in this situation. Latifah said.
Latifah allegedly recorded the video secretly with his mobile phone. The BBC said that about a year after the UAE forcibly brought Latifah back to Dubai, someone helped her Finnish friend Tiina Jauhiainen regain secret contact with her.
According to the BBC, Nishienen managed to send a mobile phone to Latifah, after which Latifah recorded many videos, “depicting her prison life in a villa converted into a prison with closed windows”.
BBC Panorama said that it had independently verified the details of Latifah’s hostage.
“About 30 policemen guarded her in shifts inside and outside the villa, only a few meters away from the beach. I don’t know if she is still there.
Latifah said in another video broadcast in the documentary that he had been held in solitary confinement for more than a year. “I worry about my safety every day, and the police threatened me that I would never see the sun again.
I’m not safe here.” Nishi Eninen also expressed concern about her princess friend: “She hasn’t seen the sun for months. She can basically walk from her room to the kitchen and then walk back.”
Latifah reportedly tried to flee abroad through the border between the United Arab Emirates and Oman in 2002, but failed.
The United Nations will question, and Britain expresses “concerned”
Rupert Colville, spokesman of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, said that he would definitely raise the matter with the UAE. Another spokesman also said that the “Working Group on Arbitrary Detention” of the United Nations Human Rights Commission may also launch an investigation after analyzing the video of Latifah.
Nine months after Latifa returned home, the United Nations asked the United Arab Emirates to provide evidence that Latifa was still alive in December 2018.
British Prime Minister Johnson also expressed “concerned” about the current situation of Latifah and would “wait to see how the United Nations investigation progresses”.
British Foreign Secretary Raab said on the 17th that the video shows “a young woman in deep trouble” and that the United Kingdom will follow the progress of the United Nations “very closely”.
The Associated Press reported that Latifah supporters also called on U.S. President Biden to put pressure on the United Arab Emirates because they believed that Biden was one of the few national leaders who could help Latifah regain his freedom.
The BBC reported that the United Arab Emirates has close relations with Western countries such as the United Kingdom and the United States, and Western countries also regard the United Arab Emirates as a strategic partner.
The chief’s ex-wife and another daughter also fled.
The BBC reported that Muhammad had a total of 25 children, and Latifah was not the only one who tried to escape from his family.
Princess Haya bint Al Hussain, sister of King Abdullah II of Jordan, is Muhammad’s ex-wife. She fled Dubai to London in 2019 with two children born to Muhammad. Haya is the sixth wife of Muhammad and is not the biological mother of Latifah.
She filed a lawsuit with the High Court of London to seek custody of her two children aged 9 and 13, for fear of their abduction. A judge of the Family Court of the High Court of London last year found that Muhammad had carried out “intimidation activities” against Haya.
The court also found that Mohammed had organized the kidnapping of Latifa and another daughter three times. According to CNN, Andrew McFarlane, Britain’s most senior family judge, found that Princess Shamsa (Latifah’s sister), born to Muhammad and another wife, also tried to escape when she went to London in the summer of 2000, which Later, the people who worked for Muhammad kidnapped her in Cambridge and forced her to get into a car and drive to a property in Muhammad.
The helicopter there took Shamsa to Deauville in northern France, and she finally flew back to Dubai.
“With regard to Shamsa and Latifah, it has been claimed that they were deprived of their liberty after returning to their father’s family supervision. McFarlane believes that this statement is true.
Muhammad said at that time that the British court’s statement was only one-sided. The governments of Dubai and the United Arab Emirates have also said that Latifah is safe under the care of her family.
The UAE government released a photo of Mary Robinson, former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and former President of Ireland, visiting Latifah in December 2018.