Prince of Wales will visit both Gulf states next week, his second trip in as many years
The UK's Prince of Wales will undertake official visits to Saudi Arabia and Qatar next week, it was announced on Tuesday.
He will visit the two Gulf states from Monday February 17 to Thursday February 20, Clarence House said in a statement.
The tour starts in Saudi Arabia where the UK royal, as a guest of King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, will meet members of the Saudi royal family.
In Qatar The Prince of Wales will meet The Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani and other senior members of the Qatari royal family.
"The Prince of Wales's return to the region, only one year after his recent visit, demonstrates the importance the British Government places on its association with key partners in the area," the statement said.
"These connections are underpinned by the long-standing and respectful relationships which exist between His Royal Highness and the Royal Families in each country," it added.
Sir John Jenkins, Her Majesty's Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, said: "Our two kingdoms share a long friendship, going back to the foundation of the modern Saudi state. Continuity of personal relationships, essential if we are to understand each other better, have been central to this. His Royal Highness’s second visit to the Kingdom in my time here as Ambassador exemplifies our wish to engage at the most senior levels and our determination to sustain the personal touch."
"At a time of enormous turmoil and human agony in the Middle East, seen today perhaps most acutely in Syria, The Prince’s advocacy of interfaith understanding and dialogue between communities is needed more than ever. His Majesty The King shares this deep concern. I know that he and His Royal Highness will have much to discuss about the need for reconciliation and their hopes for the region’s future."
Nick Hopton, Her Majesty's Ambassador to Qatar, added: "This is an opportunity to showcase the strong ties between the UK and Qatar, which we value greatly. The personal relationship between His Royal Highness and His Highness The Emir is both a symbol of this friendship between nations and important to the work we do together as the British and Qatari peoples to tackle the challenges facing us in the region and globally."
The Prince of Wales has previously made nine official visits to Saudi Arabia and four to Qatar.