Embed from Getty Images
Happy Birthday to Prince Karim al-Husayni, the Aga Khan IV, who turns 84 today! The son of Prince Aly Khan, son of the Aga Khan III, and The Hon. Joan Barbara Yarde-Buller, daughter of the 3rd Baron Churston and the Duchess of Leinster, Prince Karim al-Husayni was born in Geneva, spending his childhood in Nairobi, Kenya before attending the Institut Le Rosey in Switzerland and then going to Harvard University, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. In 1958, while still at Harvard, Prince Karim succeeded his grandfather as the Aga Khan IV, the 49th Imam of Nizari Ismailism, a denomination of Shia Islam with over 15 million followers around the world. In 1969, the Aga Khan married Lady James Charles Crichton-Stuart, who became Princess Salimah Aga Khan. The couple had three children before their divorce in 1995. In 1998, he married Princess Gabriele of Leiningen, with whom he had another son before their divorce in 2014. The Aga Khan has a net worth estimated to be at $13 billion, unique since he does not rule over a geographic territory, and is a business magnate, racehorse owner and breeder. The founder of the Aga Khan Development Network, he is the chairman of the world’s largest private development network, working towards the elimination of global poverty; the promotion and implementation of religious pluralism; the advancement of the status of women; and the honouring of Islamic art and architecture, alongside working in the environment, health, education, architecture, culture, microfinance sectors, rural development, disaster reduction, the promotion of private-sector enterprise and the revitalisation of historic cities. The Aga Khan is close to various Royal Families, having celebrated his Golden and Diamond Jubilees with Queen Elizabeth II. We wish HH a very Happy Birthday and Many Happy Returns!
(opens in a new tab)
One thought on “Aga Khan IV”
I think Queen Elizabeth II hosted a dinner for him at Windsor a couple of years ago on the occasion of his diamond jubilee. He’s a much respected and influential Muslim spiritual leader even if he is not associated with any territory. I congratulate him on achieving such a great age. I wish him joy!