Declassified has discovered a secret UK government committee that held meetings with an arms dealer, former oil executive and ex-spy — but parliament is told there are ‘no records’ of what was discussed.
Five highly repressive Gulf states – Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates — have been able to invest at least £140bn in Britain. The figure is more than five times larger than Russian investments in the UK, which have, by contrast, received sustained criticism in the media and government.
Seven members of Britain’s armed forces won an award for their ‘vital operational’ work supporting the US military after it killed Iranian general Qasem Soleimani in a drone strike last year, Declassified has found.
As new evidence emerges of Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed holding his adult daughters ‘hostage’, Declassified has found that Queen Elizabeth has met the repressive leader on at least 10 occasions since the 2011 ‘Arab Spring’.
The queen’s second son has held 70 meetings with repressive Middle East monarchies in the decade since the Arab Spring uprisings. Most meetings took place after Prince Andrew’s role as official trade envoy ended in 2011 amid the Epstein scandal, with UK diplomatic support for his Gulf trips lasting into 2019.
The heir to the British throne, Prince Charles, has held 95 meetings with eight repressive monarchies in the Middle East since the ‘Arab Spring’ protests of 2011 threatened their power. Charles has played a key role in promoting £14.5-billion worth of UK arms exports to these regimes in the last decade.
Britain’s royal family has met members of autocratic Middle Eastern monarchies nearly once a fortnight since the crackdown on ‘Arab Spring’ protests began 10 years ago this month. Their visits have often coincided with human rights abuses in the Gulf, where pro-democracy activists are punished for criticising the Windsor ties to regimes.