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Prince Charles Raises Eyebrows Over Donation From Osama bin Laden’s Family

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Prince Charles reportedly accepted a donation from an unlikely source nine years ago, according to a report from London's The Sunday Times.

The Prince of Wales—first in line to the British throne behind his mother, Queen Elizabeth II—received a $1.2 million charity donation from former al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden's half-brothers (Bakr bin Laden and Shafiq bin Laden) in 2013, the outlet reports. The donation apparently followed a meeting between Charles and Bakr at Clarence House in October 2013. The prince reportedly accepted the donation on behalf of his charity, The Prince of Wales's Charitable Fund (PWCF). Although Osama bin Laden's family publicly disowned him in 1994, Charles was allegedly urged by key advisers not to accept the donation. 

PWCF was founded in 1979 “with a mission to transform lives and build sustainable communities.” It awards grants to U.K.-registered nonprofit organizations in the U.K., Commonwealth, and overseas, according to its website.

A statement from Charles's office at Clarence House to The Sunday Times refutes his involvement in the decision to take the money. “The Prince of Wales' Charitable Fund has assured us that thorough due diligence was undertaken in accepting this donation,” the statement said. “The decision to accept was taken by the charity's Trustees alone and any attempt to characterize it otherwise is false.” Prince Charles is not a trustee, per the PWCF site.

Chair of the Prince of Wales Charitable Foundation Sir Ian Cheshire told People in a statement: “The donation from Sheik Bakr bin Laden in 2013 was carefully considered by PWCF Trustees at the time. Due diligence was conducted, with information sought from a wide range of sources, including government. The decision to accept the donation was taken wholly by the Trustees. Any attempt to suggest otherwise is misleading and inaccurate.”

Last month The Sunday Times reported that Prince Charles accepted an almost $3 million donation in cash that was handed to him at his office in bags between 2011 and 2015. The outlet reports that the donation came from former prime minister of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Jasseim bin Jaber Al Thani. According to the report, there is “no suggestion that the payments were illegal.”

Originally Appeared on Glamour