After touring old Cairo and the Giza pyramids on the first day of a two-day trip to Egypt, Britain’s Prince Charles called for a collaborative effort to protect the environment on Thursday.
After arriving in Cairo from Jordan, Charles and Camilla were greeted by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi before proceeding to Al Azhar, the 1,000-year-old seat of Sunni Islam scholarship.
Charles, 73, stated during an evening reception at a restaurant overlooking the pyramids that ancient Egyptians understood the sacred geometry of nature and that this knowledge was fundamental to life and death.
“Like our rather more modest ancient stone circles in England, the pyramids remind us of a connection to our planet that we have over time forgotten,” he said.
The heir to the British throne said that during meetings with Al Azhar’s Grand Imam and some of its students and teachers he had been reminded of the many Koranic verses that speak of the importance of caring for the planet.
“We should heed such wisdom and rediscover a sense of the sacred by learning to live within the bounds of nature, rather than thinking we can go on ignoring it,” he said.
Britain would be with Egypt, which is due to host next year’s COP27 climate summit, in the “epic struggle to protect and restore our environment”, he said.
Charles said he had also had the “special pleasure” of meeting one of Cairo’s remaining craftsmen with the knowledge to make traditional minbars, or mosque pulpits.
The Middle Eastern trip is the first overseas tour by senior British royals since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.