16 November 2021

Charles praises relationship between UK and Jordan on royal tour

16 November 2021

The Prince of Wales has paid tribute to the enduring ties between the UK and Jordan, saying the “relationship has mattered even more and matters a great deal within the UK”.

Charles began his tour of the country with the Duchess of Cornwall by visiting its ruling monarch King Abdullah II and his wife Queen Rania, and praised Jordan’s efforts in welcoming millions of refugees from the region over the decades.

When the King highlighted the recent Cop26 UN climate change conference in Glasgow the prince attended, Charles reiterated calls for action from world leaders.

Later, the Queen drove the duchess to an event at a children’s centre – taking the wheel of a Tesla.

Speaking in Al Husseiniya Palace, Charles told the King: “How hugely we all admire Jordan and your Majesty’s efforts on looking after so many refugees coming from all around the area. Jordan is so unbelievably hospitable – it’s marvellous.”

The prince apologised for the trip – initially planned for March 2020 – being delayed due to the pandemic and highlighted the importance of Jordan’s centenary celebrated this year.

He said: “It is always very special indeed to come back to Jordan – I’m sorry this time it is 19 months late. The fact that we can come back is hugely encouraging.

“This occasion is even more special bearing in mind the centenary. The friendship between our countries. That relationship has mattered even more and matters a great deal within the UK.”

The Duchess of Cornwall (right) alongside Queen Rania Al-Abdullah during a visit to the Queen Rania Family and Children Centre in Amman (Tim Rooke/PA) (PA Wire)

When the couple first arrived they were greeted by the King and Queen and the couple’s son Crown Prince Hussein and Camilla curtseyed to the monarch and was welcomed by his wife with a kiss on each cheek.

Speaking about the country’s water shortage, the King said there had only been “a little bit of rain” in the country recently and the situation would be even worse next year “unless things change”.

Charles asked the King if he had tried desalination and added: “I did meet a very interesting expert in desalination in Glasgow. It’s amazing what they can do in a much more environmentally friendly way.”

In the banquet suite, the foreign monarch made a short speech and said: “We are tremendously delighted to welcome you back.”

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall arrive at the Al Husseiniya Palace (Joe Giddens/PA) (PA Wire)

He spoke of his late father and his own pride at being “the third generation” to have had such a warm relationship with Charles.

He said it continued with “our two young men” – a reference to the meeting between the Duke of Cambridge and the Crown Prince when the pair watched the World Cup together in 2018.

The King also thanked Charles for his environmental efforts: “I want to say how proud we all are of the successes in Glasgow because that was something you started way beforehand.”

Charles said: “You’re very kind to mention (Cop26) but now hopefully the talking has gone on for so long, it’s time for action on the ground.”

The best videos delivered daily

Watch the stories that matter, right from your inbox