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Prince William has welcomed the inquiry into the BBC Panorama interview with his mother, Princess Diana in 1995. The investigation launched this week comes after the late Princess’ brother, Earl Spencer, alleged that interviewer Martin Bashir showed the royal forged documents in order to win her over. Daily Mail Consultant Editor Andrew Pierce told ITV’s Good Morning Britain that it was imperative for Mr Bashir to answer concerns about “skulduggery”.
He told viewers: “Of course, if Mr Bashir is ill, he must answer questions when he’s fit and healthy.
“Some of the other allegations will presumably have made Prince William throw his hands up in horror.
“Martin Bashir apparently told Earl Spencer that Prince William had a watch which enabled him to spy on his mother.
“Extraordinary allegations, there were about 32 allegations that show skulduggery on the part of the BBC.”
ITV’s Royal Editor Chris Ship added: “I have to say it’s highly unusual for a member of the Royal Family to comment on something such as this.
“This is an investigation launched yesterday by the BBC into exactly how Martin Bashir managed to persuade William’s mother in 1995 to do that sensational interview.
“Let’s just remind ourselves, 23 million people watched it at the time.
“This was at the height of the Charles and Diana marriage break-up.”
He continued: “Actually at the end of that interview the Queen ordered both Charles and Diana to get a divorce, and lance the boil, if you like.
“Anyone who’s watching The Crown at the moment will be reliving this – although we should point out that the show is drama, not a documentary.
“But the fact that William’s intervened in this, and all the allegations surrounding Martin Bashir and what he may or may not have done to agree to that interview, is very unusual for a member of the Royal Family.”
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The BBC held an internal inquiry in 1996 on whether the Princess of Wales had been misled, in which Mr Bashir was cleared of wrongdoing.
However the broadcaster is set to hold another “robust” inquiry in the wake of allegations from Earl Spencer.
Mr Bashir has been accused of producing fake documents to win the trust of the late royal.
BBC Director-General Tim Davie said: “The BBC is taking this very seriously and we want to get to the truth. We are in the process of commissioning a robust and independent investigation. We will have a robust investigation. It will have the appropriate independence people expect, and we will set out a process for this in due course.”
The BBC says it cannot talk to Mr Bashir at the moment as he is “seriously unwell” after suffering complications from contracting coronavirus.
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