Mary Robinson said she was ‘naive’ and made a ‘big mistake’ in missing Princess Latifa case

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Former President of Ireland Mary Robinson said she made “a big mistake” in the case of missing Princess Latifa Al Maktoum, who accused her father of holding her hostage.

s Robinson was photographed with the daughter of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, the ruler in Dubai, in 2018 during a lunch with its royal family.

Afterward, she described Princess Latifa as “a troubled young woman”.

However, a recent BBC Panorama obtained footage of video messages recorded by the princess where she said she was being kept as a “hostage” in a “villa jail”.

She escaped from Dubai in February 2018 but was forcibly returned the following month.

Former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, MsRobinson, will appear on RTÉ’s The Late Late Show tonight to set the record straight.

“I made a mistake. I let my heart lead my head. I went to help a friend. I was naive. I should have been more alert,” Ms Robinson said in a clip released ahead of the show.

She said it’s the biggest mistake she’s made and that it’s “hurtful” to realise how big of a mistake it was.

“Well that’s all I can say and that’s hurtful to me when I realise that I made a big mistake. I’ve made mistakes before and that’s the biggest one. I hope I’ll never be in that situation again.”

Princess Latifa has not been seen in public in more than two years, and the United Nations has asked the UAE for evidence that she is still alive.

Ms Robinson said she “100pc believes Latifa now” and believes that she needs political support to be freed.

She also said she wants to know where Princess Shamsa, Latifa’s sister is.

“I’ve been in touch with Simon Coveney, and he has said we are on the (UN) Security Council now but even before that contact had been made with our ambassador in Geneva to support the High Commissioner,” she said.

Amnesty International has urged the Irish Government to investigate Princess Latifa’s claims.

When asked if countries need to step in, Devin Kenny, who is Amnesty’s UAE researcher, said: “Yes, clearly, the UK government especially and the US government, but also other governments in Europe, including the Irish government, have friendly relations with the UAE and sometimes personal friendly relations with Sheikh Mohammed.

“There are strong relations between him and the British monarchy.”

Mr Kenny said it was an “absolute minimum” that countries should be raising the issue of human rights in the UAE.

Online Editors

Source: Irish News