Call for wife of Dubai’s billionaire ruler to be stripped of UN status

PRESS RELEASE, Detained International


Call comes as kidnapping survivor accuses Robinson of ‘tarnished reputation’

London, 9 April 2019– Leading NGOs, human rights lawyers and campaigners working for the release of a captured Dubai princess have called on the United Nations to strip the wife of Dubai’s ruler of her status as a UN Messenger of Peace.

The calls comes on the day the survivor of a dramatic kidnapping by Emirati and Indian state troops has accused the former UN human rights commissioner Mary Robinson of “siding with dictatorship and oppression of women”and betraying her status as a globally recognized humanitarian and women’s rights campaigner.

It also comes on the 400th day since the Indian Ocean kidnapping.

On 24 February 2018, Princess Latifa al Maktoum made a dramatic escape from what she calls her “gilded cage”home in Dubai’s royal palace, and was accompanied across the border into Oman by her friend Tiina Jauhiainen.

They made it to a US-registered boat which set sail for India, but on 4 March 2018 it was stormed off the coast of Goa by crack security forces of the UAE and India, with Latifa and Jauhiainen forcibly captured and taken back to Dubai. Jauhiainen was released two weeks later, after being held in solitary confinement and subjected to grave abuses of her most basic human rights, but Latifa remains in enforced detention. The UN, Amnesty, and Human Rights Watch have all condemned the kidnapping and sought explanations from both India and the UAE.

Four months ago, Latifa was the subject of a controversial PR stunt by Princess Haya bint al Hussein, the wife of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, the billionaire ruler of Dubai. She invited the former Irish president a