Last week a powerful photo of an all-female security team guarding British royal the Duchess of Cornwall, formerly known as Camilla Parker-Bowles, during a trip to the United Arab Emirates went viral.
Her Royal Highness with her all-female protection team during #RoyalVisitUAE From left to right: Shaima al Kaabi, Basima al Kaabi, Hannan al Hatawi, Nisreen al Hamawi and Salama al Remeithi. Earlier this year Shaima, Nisreen and Hannan also achieved the remarkable feat of conquering Mount Everest. ©Clarence House
The Duchess was visiting as part of a Middle Eastern tour with her husband Prince Charles. The couple also made stops in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Al Ain.
The Daily Mail reported that the protection squad was made up of women all from the UAE. Lieutenant Shaima al Kaabi, the head of the team, 2nd Warrant Officer Basima al Kaabi, Corporal Hannan al Hatawi (behind the Duchess), First Corporal Nisreen al Hamawi and Salama al Remeithi, official protocol officer from the court of the Crown Prince.
“…one official told the Mail yesterday that the real surprise was not that Camilla had been given a possse of female bodyguards, but that it didn’t happen in the UK as well … ‘People have very stereotypical views of women and the opportunities open to us in this part of the world. But the doors have long been open, it’s just whether we chose to step through them,’ one said.”
The website scarymommy.com wrote that, “now is a time for world leaders, including our own, to be incredibly vocal about religious tolerance. Photos like this can help spread the message and quiet those who seek to foster fear and nonacceptance.”
These women, in their flowing hijabs and abayas ready to protect the Duchess can only be described as badass.