Prince William to meet President Obama in US trip

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge at the Tusk Conservation Awards 2014 Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Prince William will give a speech about the need to combat illegal wildlife trafficking

The Duke of Cambridge will meet President Obama at the Oval Office on Monday, the White House has announced.

The meeting is part of a three-day trip to the US east coast with the Duchess of Cambridge, including Prince William's first visit to Washington.

He is expected to give a speech at the World Bank on combating illegal wildlife trafficking.

President Obama has welcomed the prince's work against what he called "a devastating environmental problem".

The White House press secretary said the issue was also a "national security threat".

Speaking about the prince's trip to America, he added that it "underscores the special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom".

In February, Prince Charles and Prince William attended an international conference held in London where a declaration was signed on fighting the illegal trade in wildlife.

Prince's campaign

Image copyright Reuters

Nicholas Witchell, BBC Royal Correspondent

He's made the battle against big-game poaching one of his priorities, and on Monday - in the Oval Office - Prince William will be hoping to enlist the support of President Obama.

Supported by his father and his younger brother, William is campaigning to combat what they say is the fourth most lucrative criminal trade in the world (after drugs, arms and human trafficking), a trade which costs the lives of tens of thousands of elephants and rhino every year.

William will take his message to China in the new year.

But before that he'll be hoping President Obama will place America's weight behind his campaign.

And after seeing the president, William will go on to a conference at the World Bank in Washington where he'll call for more intense and co-ordinated efforts to deal with the poaching gangs - before it is too late.

While the prince attends events in Washington, the Duchess of Cambridge will join Chirlane McCray - writer and wife of New York mayor Bill De Blasio - on a visit to a local child development centre.

Prince William previously met the president when he travelled to London for a state visit in 2011.

The Duke and Duchess will also attend events in support of organisations including their Royal Foundation, which supports the welfare of service personnel and young people.

Their engagements include promoting sustainable conservation, young people's mental health and supporting disadvantaged young people.

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