A legal battle between Princess Haya and Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai, began this week on Monday in the UK. The estranged royal couple is facing off each other over the welfare of their children.
The princess is seeking a legal refuge from the forced marriage of one of her children. Both the parties had confirmed in July that the legal battle is confined to the welfare of the children and does not consider their divorce and finances.
First, Princess Latifa tried to flee by boat and almost made it to India. Then Princess Haya, Sheikh Mohammed’s “public wife,” refused to return from England. As @vanessagrigor writes, there's something unusual going on with Dubai's princesses https://t.co/WLiujDntV9
— VANITY FAIR (@VanityFair) November 12, 2019
While Princess Haya assured her presence in the court, Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum was nowhere to be seen. The Shiekh has decided to stay away and even skipped the first hearing of the case.
Princess Haya arrived for the second hearing with her lawyer Baroness Shackleton, the UK’s most expansive divorce lawyer who represented Princess Charles in his divorce settlement with Princess Diana. A report says, Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum is occupied with attending the horse auction hence he distanced himself from the court proceedings.
Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum is being represented UK’s other top-notch family lawyer, Helen Ward, who represented film director Guy Ritchie in his divorce case from pop star Madonna.
Princess Haya had requested the court for a non-molestation order to protect her and children from harassment and threat in her effort to thwart a forced marriage of one of her children.
Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein of Jordan and Her Lawyer Fiona Shackleton arrive at Britain's High Court, The Royal Courts of Justice, in central London on November 12, 2019. pic.twitter.com/NT37mbcTmr
— Arabian Royal Agency (@ARoyalAgency) November 12, 2019
Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum is the ruler, prime minister and vice president of Dubai. The ruler turned 70 this year and is the owner of Godolphin horse racing stable.
Princess Haya, 45, is the sixth wife of billionaire Dubai ruler Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum. The couple tied the knot in 2004 and has two children from the marriage. Princess Haya is the daughter of the late Jordanian ruler King Hussain and half-sister of current Jordanian ruler, King Abdullah.
Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum, restricting himself from the court proceeding, has been posting poetries on his social media expressing his sorrow with the turmoil in life.
A family feud between Princess Haya and Sheikh Rashid Al-Maktoum surfaced in July this year following the reports of Princess Haya secretly escaping to Germany with her children, circulated on social media. From Germany, she moved to the UK, where she is living with her children in an £85 million house near Kensington Palace, the luxurious residence she bought from Indian billionaire Lakshmi Mittal in 2017.