UAE ‘a lawless nation with good PR companies’, campaigner David Haigh tells Euronews

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A human rights lawyer has instructed Euronews that the choice to lift the alarm over the plight of Princess Latifa has been vindicated by the worldwide response.

David Haigh launched movies by which Latifa — the daughter of one of many United Arab Emirates” (UAE) rulers — claims she is being held towards her will.

Her father is Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed Al Maktoum, the hereditary ruler of Dubai who additionally serves as prime minister and vice chairman of the UAE.

In footage filmed surreptitiously over the past yr and aired by the BBC, the 35-year-old claims she has been detained in a barricaded villa since making an attempt to flee the nation in 2018. Latifa says she has been denied medical assist and is “apprehensive about my security and my life”.

Haigh had been amongst mates Latifa had been secretly speaking with from the villa. They raised the alarm this week after shedding contact together with her six months in the past.

“We felt it was the fitting time to do it and I believe the response that you just’re seeing from world leaders, which is strictly what we needed, exhibits that it was the fitting factor to do,” he stated.

He added that the choice to launch the movies was preceded by “many, many sleepless nights”.

What has been the response to the movies?

Latifa’s lawyer, Rodney Dixon QC, has appealed to the United Nations and the worldwide neighborhood “to intervene as quickly as doable to safe her nicely being”.

“The United Nations has direct entry to the UAE authorities as one of many member states. They need to instantly look to contact them, have the mandatory conferences to type this out and resolve it and ensure we all know the place the princess is, that she may be launched and that she’s in a position to journey.

“Governments can even make sure that they assist that motion (…) Lots of them have shut relations with the UAE authorities by commerce and different causes, and that they need to use their affect to make sure that this case is resolved as quickly as doable,” he added.

The Workplace for the United Nations’ Excessive Commissioner for Human Rights stated that it could “increase these new developments with the UAE”.

A UN supply additionally instructed Euronews that “there are a selection of specialized impartial mechanisms that may be this”.

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his International Secretary Dominic Raab each stated on Wednesday that they’re “involved” concerning the state of affairs and that they might be wanting on the UN for steerage. Raab careworn nonetheless that there’s little the nation can do given Latifa will not be a UK nationwide.

‘A lawless nation with good PR companies’

Sheikh Mohammed has at all times denied the kidnapping and detention of his daughter, claiming she is within the loving care of her household.

However a UK court docket discovered earlier this yr in a case introduced by his former spouse, Princess Haya, that the Sheikh orchestrated the kidnapping of his daughter Shamsa in Cambridge in 2000 and Latifa’s two kidnappings in 2002 and 2018.

Haya fled from the UAE to the UK with the couple’s two youngsters in 2018 and the pair have since been engaged in a custody battle.

Haigh stated the kidnappings present that “it is human rights normally which might be abused by the UAE establishments”.

“That is the chief of a rustic kidnapping ladies at will with impunity and doing it repeatedly and once more,” Haigh instructed Euronews.

“We won’t enable that to occur, there needs to be rule of legislation, we have now to have requirements for international locations that we’re doing enterprise with.

“It is a lawless nation that has bought good PR companies. That is the easiest way to explain it,” he went on.

Human rights activists have additionally reacted to the newest developments with Kenneth Roth, Government Director of Human Rights Watch calling on horse racing establishments to boycott the Sheikh.

Sheikh Mohammed is a serious determine in worldwide thoroughbred horse racing and breeding along with his Godolphin horse racing operations spanning 4 continents. He’s usually seen attending the world’s greatest races, together with Royal Ascot the place he was photographed a number of instances with Queen Elizabeth.

“Irrespective of how a lot cash he pays to race his horses, no respectable ought to contact Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed al-Maktoum till he releases his daughter,” Roth wrote on Twitter.

“While you consider Dubai, do not let the excessive rises and its playground popularity obscure the truth that it’s dominated by a person, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, who has locked up his daughter, Princess Latifa, for wanting to flee from his management,” he additionally wrote.

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