The Emirati princess Sheikha Latifa has disappeared off the coast of Goa hours after posting a chilling video in which she told viewers that she might not return.
Latifa, 33, went missing alongside American Herve Jaubert hours after posting a video describing life under Dubai’s royal family.
“I am making this video because this could be the last video I make,” she says while wearing a blue top with her hair tied back. “Pretty soon I’m going to be leaving somehow I’m not sure of the outcome, but I’m 99 percent positive this could work … I am looking forward to waking up and thinking I have the freedom to do anything I want to.”
According to NDTV, Latifa sent her last WhatsApp message to her British-based lawyer Radha Stirling asking her to share the video in the event of her disappearance. She is believed to have sent the messages from a U.S.-registered boat whose location was last reported as 50 miles off the Indian coastline.
“Radha, please help me, there are men outside,” she said, adding that she could hear gunshots outside.
Stirling said Latifa contacted her legal firm Detained in Dubai in February, claiming she was forced to leave Dubai after being tortured for helping her older sister who also fled the country.
Latifa said her sister fled because she was “not allowed to make choices for her future,” and was also denied basic freedoms such as driving a car and required a nighttime curfew. She added that, by the time people saw the video, she could be “dead or in a really bad situation.”
“The email ID was confirmed by her friend and mutual contacts including a solicitor in Britain,” said Stirling, adding that both individuals were “concerned that the Indian authorities would simply notify the UAE of their whereabouts and turn them in immediately.”
The British Metropolitan police said in a statement that all “information in relation to the missing persons has been forwarded to the National Crime Agency and Interpol to international liaison officers to investigate.”
Latifa claims to be one of the 30 children of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who has ruled since 2006 as vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), as well as the Emirate of Dubai.
Although it remains one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations, the law of the United Arab Emirates remains based on Sharia law, and “crimes” such as homosexuality, abortion, and public displays of affection are all strictly illegal.