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Charles sports tie decorated with Greek flag for meeting with Prime Minister

The King, wearing a tie bearing a motif of the Greek flag, speaks to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak as they attend the opening ceremony of the World Climate Action Summit at Cop28 in Dubai (Chris Jackson/PA)
The King, wearing a tie bearing a motif of the Greek flag, speaks to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak as they attend the opening ceremony of the World Climate Action Summit at Cop28 in Dubai (Chris Jackson/PA)

The King wore a tie with a Greek flag motif when he met Prime Minister Rishi Sunak just days after the politician snubbed his Greek counterpart in a row over the Parthenon Sculptures.

Charles chatted to Mr Sunak during the opening day of Cop28, the UN Climate Change summit being staged in Dubai, sporting the neckwear decorated with the blue and white flag.

The Prime Minister sparked a diplomatic row by controversially cancelling a planned meeting in London on Tuesday with Greece’s Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

The decision came after Mr Mitsotakis used an interview ahead of the talks to push for the return of the Parthenon Sculptures, saying the current situation was like the Mona Lisa painting being cut in half.

Cop28 summit
Charles addressing Cop28 on Friday (Chris Jackson/PA)

Greece has long demanded the return of the historic works, which were removed by Lord Elgin from occupied Athens in the early 19th century when he was the British ambassador to the Ottoman Empire.

Part of friezes that adorned the 2,500-year-old Parthenon temple on the Acropolis, the Elgin Marbles have been displayed at the British Museum in London for more than 200 years.

The King has close ties to Greece through his father Prince Philip, the late Duke of Edinburgh, who was born on the Greek island of Corfu, to parents Prince Andrew of Greece and Princess Alice of Battenberg, before becoming a naturalised British subject in 1947.

The head of state also wore his natty neckwear during last week’s state visit by South Korea’s President Yoon Suk Yeol.

Charles’s tie bore a Greek flag motif (Chris Jackson/PA)

While Charles has been in Dubai, a book about the future of the royal family has caused controversy after its Dutch edition named two members of the monarchy alleged to have raised “concerns” before he was born about how dark the skin of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s son might be.

The names have been repeated by many national newspapers and the row has overshadowed the King’s address to Cop28, when he warned global leaders the world remains “dreadfully far off track” in key climate targets and called for meaningful change.