Royal photographer Anwar Hussein shared a personal story about Princess Diana and the possibility of learning more about Islam from him, specifically how he and his wife handled being together in an interfaith marriage. It all happened on a long-haul flight, he explains. Hussein spent much of the '80s and '90s chronicling Diana's life and the two were close enough for him to have his work included in a new exhibit, Princess Diana: Accredited Access, a "walk-through documentary" in Los Angeles and Chicago.
"All the lights were dimmed on the flight, and she came and whispered, 'Can I have a chat?' " he told People, noting that the chat happened in the mid-'90s. "She knew that I was married to an English girl, Caroline. She wanted to know about Islam. She was asking about being married when one person is Muslim and another is Protestant."
"She was interested because of what she was going through with [her then-boyfriend] Dr. Hasnat Khan," he added. "She didn't mention him, but she assumed I knew it. I think she was wondering how the family would react to him and things like that."
Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images
People notes that after her divorce from Prince Charles, Diana dated Pakistani surgeon and cardiologist Hasnat Khan.
"She had wanted to marry him," royal biographer Judy Wade previously told the magazine. "She had this vision that together they could bridge east and west, crossing creeds and continents. They could save lives and make it a better world."
However, Wade explained Khan couldn't handle the intensity of being with Diana, which included being hounded by paparazzi and living in the shadow of the royal family. After their relationship ended, Diana would go on to date Dodi Al Fayed until her death in 1997.