Sunday, 3 Mar 2024

King Charles flies home for emergency talks over Harry and Meghan

Top aides will gather to create a battle plan on how to counter potentially damaging fall-out from the publication of Endgame – which saw two major royals named as having remarked on the potential skin colour of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s first born Prince Archie prior to his birth.

The Daily Express has chosen not to name the two royals sighted by Scobie, after they were named in the first run of Dutch editions of the book, which was released last week.

The gathering of the two households will see them discuss how to respond, with officials insisting “time and care” be taken before any decisions are made.

However Palace sources insist all options remain “on the table”, including launching legal action against the author, who has previously been branded “Meghan’s mouthpiece”.

The Californian-based couple have so far declined to comment on the furore despite coming under huge pressure to speak out about Scobie’s “research”.

King Charles, who flew back to the UK after several days attending the COP28 environment summit in Dubai, is understood to be taking public concern surrounding the book “very seriously” and is worried of the damage it could cause to the Royal brand worldwide.

However officially senior advisers say the working Royal family will this week continue carrying out their duties in a “business as usual” fashion, with the initial tactic to be seen to be “rising above” the row.

Charles and Camilla are currently at Sandringham but will return to London midweek for a series of official engagements this week, including a ceremony at Buckingham Palace and a charity carol concert at Westminster Abbey.

A source close to the Palace told the Sunday Telegraph: “Discussions [have been] had and we’ll continue those discussions this week, but not in a crisis talks manner…

“Decisions [will be] made with care and time and professionalism rather than rushed over a weekend.’

In a further development Buckingham Palace is investigating who at their end could potentially have seen the letters between the King and Meghan Markle in which the names were allegedly mentioned.

However, sources say they are confident the leak has not come from within Palace walls, believing only a “tiny handful” of people have ever seen them.

Scobie has meanwhile attempted to distance himself from the Sussexes, writing on X, formerly Twitter: “I’m not ‘Meg’s pal”.

Friends of the Duchess of Sussex, who allegedly wrote down the names of the two family members in letters to King Charles, have insisted to that she “never intended for them to be publicly identified”.

They insist that the contents of the letters were “not leaked to Mr Scobie by anyone in her camp”.

But one source close to the Royal Family has now called on Harry and Meghan to speak out publicly on the issue.

  • Support fearless journalism
  • Read The Daily Express online, advert free
  • Get super-fast page loading

They said: “For the couple that talked about ‘death by a thousand no comments’, the silence at this point is deafening.”

Another insider added that the decision not to respond was “interesting” given the Sussexes’ previous complaints about not being supported against negative press stories.

Meanwhile former Prime Minister Boris Johnson has suggested that asking questions about a baby’s skin colour could not be construed as racist.

He said: “To ask such questions, in anticipation of a happy event, is simple human nature.

“It is one of the greatest joys and mysteries of life that we have no real idea, in utero, what our children will look like.

“That, I expect, was exactly the kind of ruminative debate that the so-called royal racist was having.”

And Sir Trevor Phillips, the former head of the Commission for Racial Equality, branded it a “nonsense story” and said the comments were “a mark of excitement, I suspect”.

The scandal – which Scobie has been forced to insist was not a publicity stunt – has kept Endgame in the headlines for more than a week as excerpts were published in the days before its release in a French magazine.

The most eye-grabbing extract serialised in Paris Match claimed that there was a second so-called “royal racist” – after Harry and Meghan alluded to a member of the Royal Household expressing discomfort over Archie’s skin colour in 2021.

They told Oprah Winfrey in their much vaunted interview a year after they quit royal duties that there had been conversations about “how dark” Archie’s skin would be when he was born.

She did not name the member of the household, saying at the time: “I think that would be very damaging to them.”

The names did not appear in the English edition of the book when it was released on Tuesday. Scobie had written a paragraph in which he said he could not name them under UK law.

But the names appeared in the Dutch version of the book, prompting the publishers to pulp copies that were on sale.

The Dutch translators who worked on the volume maintain that the manuscript they were given featured both names verbatim.

Source: Read Full Article

Related Posts