Princess Haya, a wife of the ruler of Dubai, is believed to have left the UAE for London, where she is fighting a legal battle in the High Court’s Family Division with the billionaire sheikh.
Princess Haya Bint al-Hussein, the British-educated and Jordanian-born sixth wife of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, is understood to be staying in her £85m townhouse in Kensington Palace Gardens.
It is not known exactly why she left, with the only clue a poem posted by billionaire Sheikh Mohammed, 69, on Instagram accusing an unidentified woman of “treachery and betrayal”.
The Family Division deals with matters relating to divorce and custody.
The family was previously in the spotlight over the case of Princess Latifa, one of Sheikh Mohammed’s 23 children by different wives, who reportedly attempted a daring escape from the United Arab Emirates in February 2018. She made a video at the time saying she had been held prisoner by her father.
She was not seen or heard from for 10 months, until she appeared in pictures released by the UAE foreign ministry, which said she was safe and “happy” to be home.
Radha Stirling, CEO of Detained in Dubai, said: “The bias and discrimination women in the Gulf generally suffer is only amplified when they are members of the ruling family and come into conflict with the men in their lives, because they have even less recourse than an average woman,” she said.
“The UAE is a male-dominated society, and Princess Haya’s husband, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, wields absolute power over Dubai.”