(Agence France-Presse) Fathers often see their daughters as royalty. But a few months ago, when Emily Heaton said she wanted to be a princess, her father Jeremiah quickly found her a kingdom.

Many little girls would have been satisfied with the wooden turrets and ramparts of the castle in the community playground of rural Abingdon, Virginia, where the Heatons live. But Jeremiah was thinking bigger.

Last month, he planted a flag in a tiny parcel of uninhabited land on the border between Egypt and Sudan on June 16th, Emily’s seventh birthday. The Kingdom of North Sudan was born.

“With a child you don’t want to ever tell them they can’t be something they desire to be, and at age six, her frame of reference for the world was to be a princess,” Heaton told AFP.

“So I told her that she could be.”

  • Text smaller
  • Text bigger
Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.