- Princess Haya Al Hussein initially believed to have sought asylum in Germany
- Unconfirmed Arab media reports suggest German diplomat helped her ‘escape’
- German authorities ‘have refused a request from husband to return her to Dubai’
- Reports come three months after disappearance of one of his daughters who was caught fleeing to America
The wife of Dubai’s billionaire ruler is believed to be in hiding in London after the break-up of her marriage, according to sources close to the family.
Princess Haya Al Hussein is said to be seeking a divorce after initially fleeing to Germany where she sought political asylum.
Unconfirmed reports in Arab media suggest a German diplomat helped her ‘escape’ from Dubai leading to a potential diplomatic crisis between the two countries.
It is claimed that German authorities have refused a request from her husband Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Maktoum to return his wife to Dubai.
Last year one of the Sheikh’s children, Princess Latifa bint Mohammed Al Maktoum, attempted to flee her father and Dubai for political asylum in America.
She has since disappeared, but is believed to have been returned to the United Arab Emirates where her father is the Prime Minister and Vice President.
German authorities have also refused to make any comment on the media reports and a spokesman for the Dubai ruler has also made no comment.
Two sources close to the Dubai royal family confirmed that Princess Haya has left the country and is seeking a divorce.
Oxford educated Princess Haya has not been seen in public since May 20 and her social media accounts, which are usually full of photos of her charitable work, have not been active since February.
The Princess was also a surprise absentee from last week’s Royal Ascot.
The 45-year-old accomplished horsewoman usually accompanies her husband during his annual visit to the sporting event.
Dubai’s ‘runaway princess’ who hasn’t been seen in months
Smiling for the camera, this selfie is the last known photo of Princess Sheikha Latifa, a daughter of Dubai’s billionaire ruler who attempted to escape the Arab state in March.
Living under a strict curfew and accompanied by minders any time she went outside her royal palace, Princess Latifa had even contacted a civil rights group to tell of her desperation to leave her father’s country.
Planning to start a new life in America where she would claim political asylum, the Princess drove out of Dubai to Oman, where she then sailed for India.
She was accompanied by friend Tiina Jauhiainen, also seen in the photo, and met former French spy Hervé Jaubert on his yacht Nostromo anchored in international waters.
But eight days after the 33-year-old posted the photo online she was seized from the yacht off the coast of India and forcibly returned to Dubai.
Jauhiainen and Jaubert were also taken back to Dubai and interrogated, but were released after MailOnline revealed Latifa’s capture.
Dubai officials have refused to make any comment on Latifa’s whereabouts despite pressure from human rights groups and the United Nations.
Speaking previously to civil rights group Detained in Dubai, the Princess revealed after a previous escape attempt as a teenager she was tortured and jailed for three years.
Latifa is one of 30 children the Sheikh has had with his six wives.
She will be the subject of a BBC documentary called Escape from Dubai – The Mystery of the Missing Princess which will be shown on BBC2 in December.
Both she and her husband had horses running in the Duke of Edinburgh stakes.
Sheikh Maktoum, 68, was photographed with his all male entourage and meeting with The Queen and Duke of Cambridge during Royal Ascot week but there was no sign of his wife.
A poem alleged to have been written by Maktoum and talking about ‘betrayal’ was posted on an Instagram account linked to the Dubai ruler.
In the poem the phrase ‘you cheated the most precious thing’ and ‘I gave you trust and space…the biggest mistake you did was to lie.’
There is no confirmation that Maktoum was responsible for the publication of the poem on social media.
Princess Haya is one of six wives to Dubai’s ruler, having married in 2004. She is often referred to as his ‘junior wife’ and is the daughter of the late King Hussein of Jordan.
It is not known if her two young children are with her or back in Dubai.
Her half brother King Abdullah II is the current ruler of Jordan.
A report of her fleeing to Germany first surfaced on the website Eurabia.com.
Another site Emirates Leaks also reported the claim that Princess Haya had fled to Germany with her children Jalila, 11, and Zayed, aged seven. The US based site The Daily Beast claimed Haya is in hiding in London.
Many others also commented on the reports on Twitter, including controversial internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom.
He wrote to his 700,000 followers: ‘There are unconfirmed reports that @hrhprincesshaya has fled Dubai to Germany with the help of a German diplomat. If true Haya can finally speak about what happened to Princess Latifa. Anyone who has any information please contact me via Twitter dm.’
The Princess Latifa mentioned is the 33-year-old daughter of Sheikh Maktoum who unsuccessfully tried to flee Dubai and start a new life last year.
Mail Online revealed how the Princess escaped from Dubai with the help of her best friend and a former French spy.
She made a series of videos to be released if her bid for freedom failed, describing how her life as a Princess in the Arab kingdom was a sham.