In the first engagement of their five-day visit, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – Prince William and Kate Middleton – visited a public school in the federal capital, Islamabad, on Tuesday morning.
The British royals arrived in Pakistan on Monday night on their first visit to the country which is focused on boosting bilateral ties and addressing challenges such as education and climate change.
They signalled their support for women’s education in Pakistan on by making a girls school the first stop on their tour.
The couple both wore blue for the visit to the school in the capital Islamabad, with the Duchess of Cambridge draping a long scarf, or dupatta, over the shoulder of her royal blue shalwar kameez.
The Duke, however, opted for a Western outfit, looking relaxed in a light button-down shirt with no tie.
In a video shared by a British journalist on social media, Prince William can be heard greeting the children with an “Asalamalaikum”, followed by the couple sitting on two different tables engaging in separate activities with the young students.
Arriving in the classroom….. pic.twitter.com/gd5JEQfl8z
— Rebecca English (@RE_DailyMail) October 15, 2019
They dropped in on a mathematics class where televised images showed them sitting with some of the young students, whose blue uniforms matched the Duchess’s dress.
Education official Khadija Bakhtiar told AFP that the couple helped some of the students solve problems. “Both wanted to engage in a natural way… so it was a very nice visit,” she said.
William and Kate spent roughly half an hour at the government-run school, which has an estimated 1,000 students from first to 12th grade, before they were waved off by smiling students.
They were whisked away under heavy security to visit conservationists at the Margalla Hills National Park in the Himalayan foothills outside Islamabad, before meeting Prime Minister Imran Khan, an old friend of William’s mother, the late Princess Diana.
The couple at Margalla Hills. PHOTO: Reuters
After lunch with PM Imran, the British royal couple will attend a reception hosted by British High Commissioner Thomas Drew at the National Monument in Islamabad.
(With input from AFP)