Prince Harry, his wife Meghan and his controversial Uncle Andrew will not be with the queen on the balcony of Buckingham Palace for the symbolic start of the celebrations for the 70th anniversary of the reign of Elizabeth II, 96.
“After careful consideration, the queen decided that the traditional appearance on the balcony (…) Thursday June 2 is limited this year to her majesty and members of the royal family who carry out official public engagements on behalf of the queen, ”announced a spokesman for the British royal house on Friday.
From June 2 to 5, the United Kingdom will celebrate four days of great festivities on the occasion of the “platinum jubilee” that marks Elizabeth II’s seven decades on the throne, a record for a British monarch.
They will begin with the traditional Trooping the Color or “Banner Parade”, which usually commemorates the queen’s birthday annually, although it was canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.
The British press, very fond of crises in the royal family, expected that Enrique and Meghan, who went to live in California, where the former American actress is from, after leaving the monarchy in 2020, would be with their grandmother in the balcony.
And that Prince Andrew also appeared, the queen’s third son and considered her “favorite”removed from public life for his relationship with the late pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
A total of 18 members of the royal familyincluding Crown Prince Charles, 73, and his wife Camila, their son William, his wife (Catalina) and their three children, will appear on the balcony to witness the great military parade.
Although not an active member of the monarchy, the husband of Princess Anne, the only daughter of Elizabeth II, will also be present, for the “support” given to his wife during her commitments, Buckingham Palace explained.
The fragile health of the queen
A source from the royal house, quoted by the British news agency PA, did not rule out that Enrique, Meghan and Andrés participate in other events as part of the jubilee festivities.
A spokeswoman for Harry, 37, and Meghan, 40, said they were “pleased and honored to attend the Queen’s platinum jubilee celebrations this June with their children.”
His son Archie turned three on Friday and his daughter Lilibet, who has not yet been presented to the queen in person, turns one on June 4, during festivities in honor of her great-grandmother.
Andrés, 62, stayed away from the spotlight until closing a multimillion-dollar out-of-court settlement in the United States in February with a woman who accused him of sexual assault when he was a minor and a victim of youth trafficking organized by Epstein.
However, she made a controversial appearance on March 29 on her mother’s arm at a mass in London in honor of her late father, Prince Philip, who died in April 2021.
With increasing mobility problems, the queen appears less and less often in public and the last time she did was precisely for the tribute to her husband in Westminster Abbey.
The queen’s health has been a cause for concern since doctors ordered her to rest in October and she spent a night hospitalized to undergo “tests” whose nature was never specified.
Since then, back pain and increasing difficulty standing and walking have forced him to cancel several engagements. In addition, she contracted covid-19 in February, which in her own words left her “very tired and exhausted”.
Nevertheless, last week he met privately at Windsor Castle with the Swiss president, whom he received with a smile and without a cane.
*With information from AFP.