Ruler’s daughter DubaiShe attempted to flee the emirate in 2018 but was forcibly returned, and used a smuggled phone to send a series of secret video messages captured over the past two years claiming to be held “as a hostage” in a closed villa surrounded by police.
Messages have since stopped, and activists for Princess Latifa Al Maktoum have called for international intervention in her case.
The New videos acquired by BBC Panorama It will be broadcast in more detail on Tuesday evening in the UK. It is the first time the princess has appeared, other than material published by the Dubai royal family, since a video clip appeared on YouTube after she tried to escape three years ago.
And she said in those footage, which raised international concern about her fate: “If you watch this video, this is not a good thing, either I am dead or in a very, very, very bad condition.”
The UAE government said earlier that Latifa, 35, was safe and happy with her family.
New videos include her first account of how her escape attempt in January 2018 failed, which was years in the making. In a planned operation with French businessman Hervé Joubert, martial arts trainer and her friend Tina Jauhiainen, Latifa took a boat from the Dubai beach to a yacht flying the American flag in international waters.
Eight days later, off the western coast of India, special forces stormed the yacht, and Jauhiainen claimed that they used smoke bombs to force Latifa and get to the deck and hold them at gunpoint.
British judge last year Acceptable certificate The raid was carried out by Indian soldiers and that Latifa and others may have abandoned their positions by communicating with people while they were at sea. Latifa’s last words were when she was dragged while kicking and shouting, “You can’t bring me back to life.” Don’t take me back. Shoot me here, don’t take me back, “the verdict states.
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) said that the new tape, which was recorded more than a year after Latifa’s return, talks about her suffering with the soldiers on board the boat and “kicking and fighting” and biting the arm of the commandos. She says she felt calm and passed out while being transported to a jet plane, and woke up in Dubai.
Jauhiainen and Jaubert were held in the UAE for two weeks and then released.
Latifa’s father is Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-MaktoumAnd Ruler of Dubai and Vice President of the Emirates. She is the second of his 25 children to try to flee the family, recapture and then disappear.
Her older sister Shamsa was arrested on the streets of Cambridge After fleeing the family’s home in Surrey in 2000. In an email she had smuggled out of families in Dubai, Shamsa claimed: “I was arrested by my father, and he managed to track me through someone I was in contact with … He sent four Arab men. To catch me, they were carrying weapons and threatening me. “
Latifa said in A video taken before the escape attempt She tried to escape once before, she is 16 years old, but she was arrested at the border, imprisoned for more than three years, and beaten and tortured. Latifa said, “It was constant torture, and torture that was continuous, even when they did not beat me physically, they would torture me.” “They would make noises to bother me and then come in the middle of the night, to pull me out of bed, to beat me.”
UK Family Court She ruled last year That Sheikh Mohammed (71 years) orchestrated the kidnapping of the two women and the “deprived” [them] Of their freedom. ”The ruling was part of a lawsuit involving his sixth and youngest wife, Princess Haya, 46, who fled to London in April 2019 with their two young children, and who the court said had been subjected to a campaign of“ intimidation ”by the sheikh.
The verdict accepted Haya’s nearly all claims that she was true in the balance of probabilities, including that the sheikh had attempted to hijack her by helicopter, arranged to leave weapons in her bedroom and posted threatening poems to her online.
Mary Robinson, former Irish president and United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, was flown to Dubai to meet Latifa after she was brought back there in 2018. The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs later released photos of the visit, claiming that it showed Latifa “is receiving the care and support she requires.” And “refute[ted] False Claims. ”Robinson later also said that Latifa was” in the care of her loving family. “
But Robinson told the BBC that she was subjected to a “horrific deception” during the visit and had never asked Latifa about her condition for fear it would worsen the mental state she was told the princess was suffering from. She added that the photos were intended to be private and as “evidence of life.” “I was especially tricked when the pictures went public. That was a complete surprise … I was totally stunned.”