Prince William visited a sentimental spot on the second day of his five-day tour of the Middle East.
The Duke of Cambridge posed for a photo on June 25 at the exact same spot amid the ancient Roman ruins in Jerash where his wife, Duchess Kate, was photographed playing at age 4 with sister Pippa Middleton and dad Michael Middleton more than three decades ago.
At a reception marking the queen's birthday the previous night, People magazine reported, William told guests that Kate, who's on maternity leave, "is very sorry she cannot be here with me so soon after the birth of our son Louis, but her family remembers very fondly the almost three years she spent here as a child when her father worked for British Airways in Amman."
The same day he visited the first century ruins, William — who's being hosted by Crown Prince Al-Hussein bin Abdullah II, the son of King Abdullah II and Queen Rania — also met with Syrian refugees including some who are learning photography skills as well as children who are receiving psychological support from a UNICEF Jordan program. "The way in which you opened your doors to hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria, not to mention your longstanding commitments to Palestinian refugees, is remarkable," William said, according to a statement on the Kensington Palace Twitter account.
The heir to the British throne also tried his hand at bread-making and met with once-orphaned women who were abandoned or taken away from their parents and "have now learned new skills and found work," the palace tweeted.
Later in the day, Prince William's every move will be closely watched as he arrives in Israel, CNN reported. There, he's scheduled to visit Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, and meet with both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Reuven Rivlin. He will then meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah in the West Bank on June 26.
CNN reports that William is also expected to visit Jerusalem's Old City, the Mount of Olives and the Church of St. Mary Magdalene in the Garden of Gethsemane. That's where his great-grandmother Princess Alice of Battenberg — the mother of his grandfather, Prince Philip (and a great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria) — is buried.
This official trip is significant as William will become the first British royal to pay an official visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories.
He kicked off the official tour on June 24 when he landed in Jordan on a Royal Air Force plane and joined the crown prince on a tour of the TechWorks Fabrication Lab and met with young men and women including students from Al-Hussein Technical University whose work focused on STEM-based projects. Following more official visits, William joined the crown prince to watch a rerun of the England vs. Panama World Cup soccer match he'd missed earlier in the day.
"The welcome that The Crown Prince showed me today is one that I will always remember, and which I hope to be able to reciprocate one day in the UK," William said in a statement.