Princess Latifa – Second Dubai photo emerges appearing to show ‘hostage’ alive after she 'called pals to say she's safe'

A SECOND photo has emerged of "kidnapped" Princess Latifa sitting with friends in Dubai as it's reported she has called pals to say she's safe.

The images are the first time the alleged hostage, 35, has been seen out in public since secret video messages were released in February from her "villa jail."

Latifa has repeatedly accused her father – Dubai's ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum – of holding her hostage, claims he strongly denies.

The new images have not been independently verified – however the princess' campaign team told The Sun Online they believe they are genuine.

Earlier we reported how the first image to emerge showed Latifa sitting in what looks like a shopping mall with two women smiling and appearing relaxed.

In the background is an advertisement for the Japanese animated film Demon Slayer which was released in the United Arab Emirates on May 13.

The photo was originally posted to Instagram by a woman named Shinny Bryn who captioned the image: "Lovely evening at MoE with friends."

The MoE refers to the Mall of the Emirates in Dubai.

Face masks can also be seen on their table indicating that the photo was taken recently.

The other photo – also posted on Instagram – shows Latifa sitting in a waterside restaurant with one of the two women who appeared in the first snap.

Meanwhile, sources told The Sun on Sunday the Princess "has been in touch with close friends.

"Things are moving in the right direction, but there is a degree of caution. We're confident she has been released," one added.

In a statement, David Haigh, of the Free Latifa campaign and Detained International, said: "We confirm that there have been several potentially significant and positive developments in the campaign.

"We do not intend to comment further at this stage, a further statement will be issued at the appropriate time".

In 2002, Latifa made her first alleged escape attempt aged 16 – however she was captured at the UAE'S border with Oman.

She was then imprisoned for three years and four months, reports say.

In 2018, she once again tried to flee, this time with the help of her friend Tiina Jauhiaine and former French spy Herve Jaubert.

Yet, after boarding a boat in Oman, the vessel was stopped by Indian officials in international waters and the princess was sent back to her father.

In February this year, secret videos were released showing Latifa claiming she is a "hostage" and is being held in a royal villa under armed guard.

She also alleged that she has been beaten and drugged.

In response to the footage, the United Nations stepped in and asked the UAE for proof that Latifa is still alive.

But, the royal family simply replied with a statement saying she was now "being cared for at home".

Her father has claimed that his daughter was conned into fleeing by criminals who wanted money.

He insists she is safe and that her family's privacy must be respected.

Radha Stirling, of legal experts Detained in Dubai, was contacted by Latifa during her escape attempt in 2018.

After viewing the new photo, Stirling told The Sun Online: "If the photograph is genuine, it would indicate that the UAE intends to perhaps allow Latifa to return to public life as was mentioned in their last statement.

“The UAE has declined media requests and largely ignored United Nations pleadings.

"Despite increasing pressure, the UAE’s position has remained that Sheikha Latifa Al Maktoum is in ‘the loving care of her family’.

"The family still maintains that Latifa has mental health problems which they do not intend to make a spectacle of."

On viewing the picture of Latifa, Herve Jaubert: "I am so relieved to hear this wonderful news. Princess Latifa looks straight in the camera and seems to be herself and happy."

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