Prince Harry security row: Reason Duke of Sussex not in UK for Prince Philip event today

Prince Harry criticised by Myers over UK security row

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A service of thanksgiving for the life of the Duke of Edinburgh will be held at Westminster Abbey today, on Tuesday, from 10.30am. The Queen is determined to attend, despite concerns over her health. But it is now certain Prince Harry, the Queen and Prince Philip’s grandson, will not be present at the service.

The Duke of Sussex has opted to remain in the US due to his concerns over his security in the UK.

He, along with his wife Meghan Markle, lost his taxpayer-funded police protection following his decision to step back from royal duties in 2020.

The Government has refused his request to be permitted police protection during any visits to the country, despite his offer to foot the bill.

A legal representative of the Duke earlier this year insisted private security would not be sufficient.

In a statement, the representative stressed: “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex personally fund a private security team for their family [in the US], yet that security cannot replicate the necessary police protection needed whilst in the UK.

“In the absence of such protection, Prince Harry and his family are unable to return to his home.”

Omid Scobie, author of “Finding Freedom”, confirmed earlier this month continued failed attempts to secure police protection meant Prince Harry would not be returning to the UK for his grandfather’s service of thanksgiving.

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He reported in a post on Twitter: “A spokesperson for the Sussexes confirms that Prince Harry will not be returning to the UK for the Service of Thanksgiving for the life of Prince Philip on March 29.

“He does, however, hope to visit the Queen as soon as possible.”

A poll of Express.co.uk readers found the Duke was right to be denied police protection.

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Fifty-four percent of respondents argued neither the Government (that is, the taxpayer) nor Harry himself should pay for him to receive protection from the police.

They said he should pay for “his own private security” instead.

A total of 20,514 readers took part in the Express.co.uk poll, which was conducted between January 18 and January 20, 2022.

Prince Harry is now pursuing legal action against the Home Office over his protection.

Parts of this will be kept private, the High Court ruled last week.

A lawyer representing the Government argued the Duke’s offer of private funding was “irrelevant”, adding “personal protective security by the police is not available on a privately-financed basis”.

It is understood Prince Harry will be present at the Invictus Games in Holland next month.

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