Prince Charles’ Charity Accepted Millions From Osama Bin Laden’s Family

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LONDON – Prince Charles, heir to the British throne, was again under scrutiny on Saturday over his charities’ funding after a report revealed that one organization made a donation of £1 million ($1.21 million) from the family of Osama bin Laden had accepted.

As first reported by The Sunday Times of London, the Prince of Wales’ Charitable Fund received the donation in 2013 from brothers Bakr and Shafiq bin Laden, half-brothers of Osama bin Laden, the founder of Al Qaeda and architect of the attacks. of Sept 11 .

The news of the payment follows a string of recent royal scandals, including a report in June that Prince Charles had accepted $3.1 million in cash donations from a Qatari billionaire between 2011 and 2015, some of which came in person in a briefcase and shopping bags.

The Bin Ladens are a powerful Saudi family, whose multinational construction activities and close ties to the Saudi royal family have made them extremely wealthy. However, there is no suggestion that Bakr or Shafiq bin Laden sponsored, supported or involved any form of terrorism. And the family ousted Osama bin Laden in 1994 when Saudi Arabia stripped him of his citizenship for his extremist activities.

On Saturday, Clarence House, the prince’s official office and residence, confirmed that the bin Laden brothers had given the money to the royal charity, but disputed reports that Prince Charles had brokered the deal or made the decision personally to accept it. .

“The Prince of Wales’ Charitable Fund has assured us that a thorough investigation has gone into accepting this donation,” said a statement from Clarence House.

“The decision to accept has only been taken by the trustees’ trustees and any attempt to characterize it otherwise is false,” the statement added.

But The Sunday Times reported that Prince Charles brokered the payment after a private meeting with Bakr bin Laden at Clarence House in London on October 30, 2013, two years after Osama bin Laden was assassinated in Pakistan.

The paper also reported that the heir to the throne had agreed to the donation despite vocal objections from his own advisers.

A royal official, not authorized to speak publicly, denied that the prince had accepted the donation, negotiated the deal or had been advised to return the money.

The Sunday Times reported that some of Prince Charles’ aides had warned of the inevitable backlash if it became known that his charity had taken money from the family of the man who orchestrated the terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people, including 67 British.

Founded in 1979, The Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund says its mission is “to transform lives and build sustainable communities by granting grants to a wide range of charities within our key funding themes: heritage and conservation, education, health and well-being, social inclusion, environment and countryside.”



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