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Prince Charles shares powerful message with refugees

The Prince of Wales was speaking at the Holy Trinity Brompton

prince charles refugee response programme
Matthew Moore
Matthew MooreOnline News Writer & Diversity and Inclusion Lead
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Prince Charles has shared a powerful message with refugees during a visit to the Holy Trinity Brompton.

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The Prince of Wales visited a church in Earl's Court to learn more about their work supporting refugees who had fled from war and other disasters. Last September, they set up the Refugee Response in order to help those who had fled Afghanistan following the Taliban takeover. The initative saw dozens of volunteers donate toys, clothing and other essential items, as well as helping connect people with local authorities.

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He also spoke with Ukrainian Andriy Kopylash, 55, and his daughter Veronika, both of whom are involved in the Alpha Christianity programme.

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Veronika had been living in Kyiv, but under urging from her father she ended up on a plane to Italy the night before Russia's invasion.

Praising the work of the church, and others across the country, the royal said he had the "greatest admiration" for the people and volunteers who are "making such a difference to the lives" of the refugees.

He added: "If I may say so I cannot even begin to imagine the dreadful conditions, the suffering, the agony you have all had to endure on your way to arrive here in this country."

prince charles refugee speech© Photo: Getty Images

The royal delivered a speech at the church

He continued: "I pray you have been welcomed and the fact that you have found some accommodation," before adding "there are people here to help you learn English, to find your way through the inevitable difficulties that there are".

The 73-year-old was then applauded as he said: "I have visited Afghanistan once, sadly only once, about ten years ago. I know there are many of you from Iran, I went to Iran once or twice… and once to Iraq, I keep hoping, inshAllah, that there will be another chance to go there. I've always wanted all my life to visit Syria and the Yemen.

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"And now so much has been destroyed by these terrifying wars and conflicts. And for me it is an immeasurable tragedy that so much death and destruction exists around the world at this present time leading to much utter misery for so many people who have to leave their countries like you have."

The royal explained it seemed "even more insane" for issues like war to be happening "when we have a global emergency at the same time of mammoth proportions to tackle climate change, biodiversity loss" and that humanity should be "collaborating together to work together to solve these immense problems we have created for the world around us".

prince charles refugee gift© Photo: Getty Images

The royal met with refugees from Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and Yemen

"With people like yourselves to help in the future there is a chance, perhaps. I just want to say that we are so fortunate to have people like the wonderful churches here who are all over the world, who are all helping, all providing selfless service under the most challenging, dangerous conditions."

He concluded: "We are so lucky to have people like that. I find it very humbling to think of what the contribution is that they are making. It has been such a pleasure to meet you. I keep praying for you. There are so many people wanting to help you."

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Last week, Prince Charles visited the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral alongside his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, where they expressed their solidarity with the people of Ukraine.

He said: "I must say my wife and I have been deeply moved by everything we’ve heard today during our visit and above all by the extraordinary bravery, generosity and fortitude of the Ukrainian community in the face of such truly terrible aggression."

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