Queen Rania’s Interview with ITV News

September 18, 2022

EMMA MURPHY: Your Majesty, tell me what it means to you to be in London at this point?

QUEEN RANIA: Well, I don’t think there’s anywhere else you want to be at this point. I think what happened has been such a monumental event, and it is the end of an era, really, but also it’s the effect that she’s had in her passing. So, not only did she have an incredible impact during her lifetime, but in her passing she has unified the country. And as I was saying, you know, I’ve never seen such a sense of community and unity in this country as I see today. People put all their differences aside, and they came together and remembered what is most important, which is that they’re all unified in their love for their country and their monarch. And it has been humbling, really, to see that impact and to see all those people lining up in the streets, nobody is asking them to do that, they’re doing it out of their own volition because they love their Queen, and they deeply appreciate everything she’s done for them, and they’re coming to pay their respects. And it’s been done in such an orderly and dignified and elegant fashion that it makes everybody so proud. Everybody who’s here should be proud to be British and everybody who’s watching should be proud of the British people. And honestly, maybe it’s a sad time, but it’s also a time that I think has given people confidence that the foundations that Her Majesty laid for this country are extremely strong and resilient and they will survive any difficulty. And I know the country has been facing some difficult times over the past few years, but this is a time to realize that, you know, you’re going to come out of this stronger at the other end because the foundations are really there.

EMMA MURPHY: In terms of your memories of the time you spent with the Queen, what stands out for you?

QUEEN RANIA: You know, what stands out for me is how despite being the most important person in the room, she always made you feel like you’re the most important person in the room, you know. And she just had a very gentle and subtle way around her. You know, her elegance wasn’t just in her appearance, but it really was in the way she lived her life and the way she conducted herself around other people. She always made you—she always disarmed you because she knew that anybody around her is going to be feeling a sense of deep awe and maybe a bit of panic when they meet Her Majesty. So, she always disarmed you by looking you in the eye, by giving a gentle smile, by just, you know, a little bit of a teasing joke. You know, she always somehow made you feel comfortable around her. And she was very empathetic and always focused on the person in front of her, you know, how are they feeling, how can I make them feel more comfortable. So, I just have the most wonderful memories of her, and throughout the years, every time I met her I felt she was warmer and warmer, you know, and would give--She doesn’t ever presume that you want her advice but she’s always very generous when you ask for it. And so, she always gave a guiding hand and always gave just direction. And I really looked up to her. She, to me, she is the Queen of the world. She might be the Queen of England, but I think, symbolically, she is Queen to all of us.

EMMA MURPHY: You as a member of a royal family will know how difficult it is to live life in the spotlight. In terms of the family here, how difficult is it for them to grieve in such a public way? And how much support does seeing the people out in the streets actually bring…

QUEEN RANIA: Well, you know, my heart does go out to King Charles, and to the rest of the royal family members because I know how difficult it is to have to contend with a personal loss and the grief that comes with it, and the same time assume such a huge responsibility. And so, I know that maybe for him, I don’t know how much time he’s had to grieve his mother’s loss, and so… We went through that, you know, back in 99, my husband, when we lost our King Hussein. It was such a difficult time for us, but at the same time there was such a big responsibility ahead of us that trying balance between the two is not easy. But I can tell you, that seeing the empathy and the respect and the--just the way the people have shown up--I think they can draw a great deal of strength from that. It makes all the difference in the world in them being able to move on into the next phase.

EMMA MURPHY: And that next phase obviously is a huge change for the King and the Queen Consort. You have that experience….

QUEEN RANIA: Yes, we have…

EMMA MURPHY: What would your suggestion be for tackling this next stage?

QUEEN RANIA: Well, you know, he has been preparing for this role all his life. So I think he is ready. He has what it takes. We’ve known King Charles for many years, we know the man that he is. You know, he’s incredibly intelligent, incredibly thoughtful, a very genuine person, he knows the issues deeply and cares deeply and everything he does he does from the heart. So, I have no doubt the transition will be very, very smooth, and that he will assume his role. And this is the time for him, and he is the person best-suited for this country at this time.

And I think you know he is going to take Great Britain into the future, and I think you’re going to come out of this stronger at the other end. I know it’s been challenging, but I think the future is--it’s going to be tough for another couple of years, but I think it’s all going to be good in the end.

EMMA MURPHY: And in terms of the King and Prince William, who you work closely with at Earthshot, have you been able to speak to them in any way?

QUEEN RANIA: I have been able to speak to Queen Consort Camilla, and tonight we’re going to be seeing King Charles and Prince William. Tonight and tomorrow. Yes, I mean--my heart goes out to them. It’s a very difficult time. I know how much they loved her, deeply respected her, how much of a role model she was to all of them, and I think the way that they’re going to sort of pay tribute to her memory is to really keep her legacy alive and to emulate her example. And she has instilled in them the most important values of a deep sense of duty, of discipline, of service for the country, and I think that they are going to follow in her footsteps in a very steady way. Every leader has his--will leave his own mark, but I think the main principles are going to continue throughout the generations.

EMMA MURPHY: Your Majesty, thank you so much for your time.

QUEEN RANIA: Thank you.

EMMA MURPHY: And safe travels to New York.

QUEEN RANIA: Thank you very much.