Britain’s Queen Elizabeth issued an unprecedented statement on the future of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
“Today my family had very constructive discussions on the future of my grandson and his family,” the queen wrote in a statement. “My family and I are entirely supportive of Harry and Meghan’s desire to create a new life as a young family. Although we would have preferred them to remain full-time working members of the Royal Family, we respect and understand their wish to live a more independent life as a family while remaining a valued part of my family.”
“Harry and Meghan have made clear that they do not want to be reliant on public funds in their new lives,” the queen added. “It has therefore been agreed that there will be a period of transition in which the Sussexes will spend time in Canada and the U.K. These are complex matters for my family to resolve, and there is some more work to be done, but I have asked for final decisions to be reached in the coming days.”
Harry and Markle, his American-born wife, announced on Instagram FB, +1.62% Wednesday that they would “work to become financially independent” and move overseas. Markle left for Canada on Thursday, but reports say she may join the emergency summit by phone. Harry is expected to join her when he finishes hashing out a deal on their new life in Canada and the U.S. Harry, William, Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth reportedly met Monday to discuss their plans.
Newspapers reported that the queen was “disappointed” with their announcement, and had asked the couple to hold off on issuing a statement about their plans before the financials, logistics and public-relations strategy were all worked out, including issues like their HRH status and security detail. Since their engagement, Markle has dealt with press coverage that has been described by some as both overtly and covertly racist.