Prince William to make another sensitive visit to the Middle East

At a time when the Royal Family has been in the news for all the wrong reasons, Prince William will embark on a tour of the Middle East today, hoping to re-focus attention on the official work of the family.

The trip includes a visit to troops who patrol the strategically important stretch of water just 20 miles from Iran.

The Strait of Hormuz, which connects the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf is the most important shipping route for the world’s oil industry.

The Duke of Cambridge will land in Kuwait tonight before travelling to Oman.

This is his second solo visit to the Middle East following last year’s diplomatically sensitive trip to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Authorities.

He is increasingly stepping into more diplomatically sensitive roles as he takes on more royal duties from the Queen and Prince Charles.

Prince William is taking on more royal duties from Prince Charles and the Queen. Credit: PA

He will also visit British forces on a exercise in the Kuwaiti desert - as part of a military relationship which began after the liberation of Kuwait in the first Iraq War in 1991.

Prince William will also mark the 120th anniversary of the Treaty of Friendship between the UK and Kuwait which was signed in 1899.

The visit to Musandam in Oman, which is on the Strait of Hormuz is particularly sensitive after Iran’s Revolutionary Guard seized a British-flagged tanker last summer.

The Stena Impero was detained for more than two months.

The vessel was stormed by Iranian forces as it sailed through the narrow stretch of water between Oman and Iran in July.

It’s the first major tour by a member of the Royal Family since the Prince Andrew storm over his relationship with the convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Andrew stepped down from royal duties ten days ago after The Queen and Prince of Wales decided the fallout from his television interview was overshadowing the work of the Royal Family and threatening to damage its reputation.

The Duke of Cambridge’s visit to the Gulf region will also focus attention on the environment in a part of the world not known for its work to protect the natural world and its ecosystems.