65th Birthday Of The Late Queen Alia Al Hussein
Jordan today marks the 65th anniversary of the birth of the late Queen Alia Al Hussein. Queen Alia was born on December 25th 1948 in the Egyptian capital. She was the only daughter of Baha Uddin Toukan, a Jordanian Ambassador, and Hanan Hashim. She spent her childhood in Egypt, Turkey, United States, London and Rome. She attended the Church School in London and the Rome Center of Liberal Arts of Loyola. She graduated with a political science minor, with social psychology and public relations at Hunter College in New York.
In 1971, Alia returned to Amman to work. She was the reunited with King Hussein at a family celebration. King Hussein did not recognize her and asked Prince Zaid bin Shaker who she was. The King knew Alia since she was a child because he spent his school holidays (Hussein was studying at Victoria College in Cairo) at the Ambassador´s home. Since that moment, the King and Alia start a friendship and only few weeks later they were engaged.
The wedding took place on December 24th, 1972 at the home of Queen Alia’s parents in Amman. King Hussein and Queen Alia had two children: Princess Haya, born on May 3, 1974, and Prince Ali who was born on December 23, 1975. They also adopted a Palestinian girl, Abir Muhaisen, in December 1973.
Queen Alia had an active role as Queen Consort and she created the Queen’s office. The late Queen represented Jordanian women at many international conferences, serving as a model for Arab women, supporting Arab women’s causes and their participation in socio-economic development. Her interest in the arts led to the founding of the Haya Cultural Centre for Children and the National Folklore Troupe.
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