According to a recent report, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle may skip Prince Philip’s upcoming memorial ceremony if their disagreement over security is not resolved completely.
It was expected that they would attend his late grandfather’s funeral in spring 2022, who died last April at the age of 99, and finally introduce their 7-month-old daughter, Lilibet, to the other members of the royal family.
But all of that is currently on hold because Harry and Meghan are embroiled in a legal battle with the British government over a decision not to allow him to pay for police protection for his family while in the UK.
Prince Harry wants to bring Lilibet and Archie, his 2-year-old son, to visit from the United States, but they are “unable to return to his home” because it is too dangerous, according to a legal representative.
The decision to get proper security comes after he was chased by a swarm of photographers from a WellChild event in London last summer.
Although Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have their own security in the United States, sources have revealed that their privately paid-for team has no authority in the United Kingdom.
“If Harry goes, he will want to have security for him and his family. If and when he decides to go back to the UK, he needs security,” a royal source said.
Although Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have not made any official travel plans for the year, it is widely assumed that they will attend Prince Philip’s memorial service.
It would be Lilibet’s first meeting with her great-grandmother Queen Elizabeth and grandfather Prince Charles, as well as her uncle and aunt, Prince William and Kate Middleton. Markle has not returned to the United Kingdom since the couple announced their retirement from royal life in March 2020.
In April 2021, The Duke of Sussex attended his late grandfather’s funeral, but his wife, the Duchess of Sussex, who was heavily pregnant with Lilibet at the time, stayed in the United States as her doctor advised then.
Reps for Prince Harry revealed in a lengthy statement Saturday that he has twice petitioned the UK government to allow him to pay for his own police security, including a request for a judicial review of the matter in September 2021, so as “not to impose on the British taxpayer.” His request was denied both times.
“As is widely known. others who have left public office and have an inherent threat risk receive police protection at no cost to them,” the statement continued.
According to the statement, these security concerns were especially evident during Harry’s most recent trip to the UK, when he attended the unveiling of a statue of his late mother, Diana. He was guarded while at the event near his old home at Kensington Palace, but not when he left.
“During his last visit to the UK in July 2021 … [Harry’s] security was compromised due to the absence of police protection, whilst leaving a charity event,” the statement said.
If the issue is not resolved, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s return for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations in June may also be jeopardized.
“I doubt his own security from the States would be allowed to the inner sanctum of the Royal Family. That is a job that is done by the Met Police or Thames Valley Police. I think he has a point,” Charles Rae, former royal editor at the Sun, told newsmen.
Meanwhile, Dai Davies, the former head of royal protection, warned Harry that he “cannot pick and choose” when he visits the UK and receives protection.
Princess Anne, Harry’s aunt, was nearly kidnapped and her protection officer was shot, according to the ex-Met Police officer, but she does not have full-time protection.
“However, should there be a risk when he comes, then, clearly, the Metropolitan Police would be duty bound,” Davies said to “Good Morning Britain.”