William and Kate look relaxed in first outing since Harry’s book
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The Prince and the Princess of Wales have come under fire for skipping the funeral of King Constantine II in Greece’s capital Athens. Britain’s future monarchs were tipped to join a host of royals bidding a final farewell to Greece’s former and last King, who also happen to be William’s godfather.
Instead, Princess Anne and Lady Gabriella Windsor represented the British Crown at the funeral surrounded by a string of other European royals from Belgium, Britain, Denmark, Luxembourg, Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway and Spain.
In an opinion column for news.com.au, royal writer Daniela Elser described the Waleses’ no-show as a “huge mistake” in the aftermath of Prince Harry’s explosive book.
The Duke of Sussex is “completing his transformation from lord of the lager to the most famous figure of royal dissent since the Roundheads”, Mr Elser said, by damaging the Royal Family’s already bruised reputation abroad with his tell-all book ‘Spare’.
Skipping the European royal event “hardly counters that message” but instead reinforces it, she argues.
The effect of Harry’s claims is that the Windsor family appears to be “pathologically self-interested sorts with all the innate warmth of a freezer full of Paddle Pops.”
The royal writer said: “Photos from the burial show a visibly moved Queen Anne Marie and Crown Prince Pavlos embracing Prince Joachim of Denmark, Prince Beatrix of The Netherlands, King Willem-Alexander of The Netherlands, and Princess Beatrix of The Netherlands (formerly the country’s queen), among others.”
That, Ms Elser said, was William and Kate’s chance to project “warmth” and a “humanising element” to their image at a difficult time for the Royal Family.
Buckingham and Kensington Palace have so far ruled out commenting on Harry’s allegations by keeping a “complete and utter vow of monastic silence”.
Royalty from throughout Europe gathered in Athens on Monday for the funeral of the former and last king of Greece, Constantine II, who was buried as a commoner despite being born a prince after his people chose to dissolve the monarchy in 1974.
The godfather of the heir Prince William, Constantine II, a second cousin of the British King Charles, spent the majority of his life overseas but later moved back to his native country. Greece’s last monarch died aged 82 last week in a hospital in Athens.
Over 200 people attended the private funeral service held at the Athens Metropolitan Cathedral.
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Denmark’s Queen Margrethe II, the King and Queen of the Netherlands and the entire Royal Family of Spain attended the service. Royals from Sweden, Luxembourg and Monaco were also present.
Princess Anne served as the representative of the British Royal Family. Prince William, who was Constantine’s godson, King Charles III, and Kate did not attend the funeral.
Controversy erupted over Constantine’s funeral plans as the Greek government decided against holding a state funeral for the late leader.
Prime Minister Mitsotakis defended the move, saying that the former monarch was the leader of the “Kingdom of Greece, which no longer exists.”
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