Prince William arrives in Jordan for historic five-day tour of Middle East

Prince William has arrived in Jordan for the first day of his historic five-day tour of the Middle East.

He was given a warm welcome by Crown Prince Hussein bin Abdullah II after disembarking RAF Voyager shortly after 4pm local time.

And the prince looked relaxed and smiled broadly as he walked alongside the the Crown Prince down a red carpet which had been rolled out to welcome him as he stepped onto the tarmac of the Queen Alia International Airport in the Jordanian capital.

The Duke of Cambridge’s trip will include visits to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.

His tour of the region is his most high-profile foreign trip and the first official visit to the region by a member of the monarchy on behalf of the Government.

During his visit, the Duke of Cambridge will meet Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas.

Kate Middleton will not be travelling with William as she is on maternity leave following the birth of their third child Prince Louis.

Kensington Palace has tweeted: "The Duke of Cambridge has landed in Amman, Jordan.

"Over the next five days The Duke will visit Jordan, Israel, and the Occupied Palestinian Territories – and is looking forward to building a real and enduring relationship with the people of the region."

The Duke was said to be “very much looking forward to the trip” but it comes during a period of tension in the area.

Dozens of Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces during recent protests at the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip in the run-up to celebrations marking the 70th anniversary of the founding of Israel.

William will begin his trip in Jordan where he will learn about the Crown Prince Foundation, an initiative of Al Hussein bin Abdullah II, heir to the Jordanian throne in the country’s capital Amman.

Later tonight he will attend a Queen’s birthday party at the residence of Britain’s ambassador to Jordan, Edward Oakden.

In Israel, William will visit the Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Centre, and will lay a wreath to commemorate the millions of Jews who died during the Second World War.

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He will also view Jerusalem’s Old City from the Mount of Olives and visit the nearby Church of St Mary Magdalene to pay his respects at the tomb of Princess Alice of Greece, his great-grandmother and the Duke of Edinburgh’s mother.

William will be following in the footsteps of Philip, who visited his mother’s grave in 1994 when he travelled to Israel for a ceremony honouring her for saving Greek Jews during the Second World War.

The visit is a major milestone for William who will have to use all his skills of diplomacy to avoid ruffling political feathers in the region while still engaging with his hosts in Jerusalem and Ramallah.

A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "The historic nature of this tour is of course important and the Duke considers it a great privilege to be undertaking the first ever official royal tour of Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories and to be able to help further strengthen the friendship between Jordan and the United Kingdom."

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