After Meghan Markle’s claims about racism, Buckingham Palace says issues will be addressed by the family “privately”
After senior members of the British royal family held a “crisis meeting”, Buckingham Palace said the issues raised by former prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle during their explosive interview with television show host Oprah Winfrey, including that of racism, were “concerning and taken very seriously”.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the Palace said, “The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan. The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning.”
They added, “Whilst some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much-loved family members.”
The statement was issued a day after the interview was aired in the UK on iTV on Monday night, just 24 hours after it was broadcast in the US on Sunday.
According to media reports, the emergency meeting took place on Monday after the Palace began facing growing pressure to respond to the interview during which Meghan accused the Royal family of being “cold and racist”, especially towards her and their son Archie, which pushed the couple away.
Meghan said the fear for their child, for whom no security was offered by the Royal family, and the growing scrutiny by the media had a damaging effect on her mental health, and she claimed she was going through suicidal thoughts while she was pregnant.
She also spoke at length about the issue of racism towards Archie, saying there were “concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he’s born.”
Meanwhile, Harry said in the interview that he realised how he had been “trapped” all along just like the “rest of his family.”
Harry added that he felt “let down” by his father Prince Charles, saying the Prince of Wales had stopped taking calls after the couple informed the Palace of stepping back as active members of the royal family, before they had made the formal announcement in January 2020.
While many people extended support for the couple, Meghan’s estranged father Thomas Markle defended the royals, saying he hoped the skin tone comment was “just a dumb question.” “It could just be that simple, it could be somebody asked a stupid question, rather than being a total racist,” he was quoted as saying.
Media sources said the interview was viewed by an average of 11.1 million people in the UK.
While Prime Minister Boris Johnson did not comment on the topic, Downing Street confirmed that he had watched the interview.
Opposition Labour Party leader Keir Starmer said Meghan’s allegations about racism and a lack of mental health support should be taken “very seriously”.
Once the interview was over and was airing the next day, Meghan had allegedly sent a text to Oprah. The television show host said, “Well, I haven’t really spoken to them since the interview because we’re in different time zones. I got a text from Meghan yesterday saying, ‘How’s it going?’ Because she was putting Archie to bed waiting on the West Coast feed and had no idea what was happening on the East Coast.”
Oprah had said she wrote back that she didn’t know either and had added, “From what I can tell, it’s going well, I know it’s airing.”
Media reports said Oprah might have a conversation with the couple later about the interview.