Harry and Meghan confirm royal family departure – Queen statement in full

Meghan Markle: Court case is a 'huge win' for Royals says expert

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Buckingham Palace has confirmed that Meghan Markle and Prince Harry will not be returning to the Royal Family permanently, following a review of their role since they made the decision to step back in early 2020.

A Buckingham Palace statement read: “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty The Queen that they will not be returning as working members of The Royal Family.

“Following conversations with The Duke, The Queen has written confirming that in stepping away from the work of The Royal Family it is not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service.

“The honorary military appointments and Royal patronages held by The Duke and Duchess will therefore be returned to Her Majesty, before being redistributed among working members of The Royal Family.

“While all are saddened by their decision, The Duke and Duchess remain much-loved members of the family.”

A spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex said: “As evidenced by their work over the past year, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex remain committed to their duty and service in the UK and around the world, and have offered their continued support to the organisations they have represented regardless of official role.”

“We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.”

The couple have been subject to a review period, at the end of which there was a review between the Sussex clan and the Royal Family regarding their ongoing role.

The couple’s Spring 2020 Transition statement stipulated: “In relation to the military, the Duke of Sussex will retain the rank of Major, and honorary ranks of Lieutenant Commander, and Squadron Leader.

“During this 12-month period of review, the Duke’s official military appointments will not be used as they are in the gift of the Sovereign.

“No new appointments will be made to fill these roles before the 12-month review of the new arrangements is completed.”

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Prince Harry has now lost a number of high value roles that he cherished – including his military titles. 

He has lost his titles as Captain General of the Royal Marines, as Honorary Air Commandant of RAF Honington in Bury St Edmunds, and as Commodore-in-Chief, Small Ships and Diving, Royal Naval Command.

The couple will have their royal patronages removed as they are a gift of the sovereign.

This means Meghan will lose her position as patron of the National Theatre and Prince Harry will lose his associations with the Rugby Football Union, Rugby Football League and London Marathon.

The news comes as the couple announce they are to engage in what is expected to be a tell-all interview with American TV personality Oprah.

The interview, which will air next month, is suspected to address the couple’s role in the Royal Family and the surrounding fall out.

Entitled Oprah With Meghan And Harry: A CBS Primetime Special, it will focus on Meghan, with her husband coming in at the end of the interview.

The couple have also recently announced that they are expecting their second child together.

The pair have not disclosed when the baby is due or whether Archie will be getting a brother or sister.

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