Buckingham Palace has chosen not to comment on the harrowing car pursuit involving Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on May 16, People reports. This is a common practice for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex since they stepped down from their royal family roles. The couple had gone out to the Ziegfeld Ballroom on Tuesday evening to attend the Women of Vision Awards with Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland. However, what was meant to be a tranquil evening quickly devolved into a terrifying ordeal as the royals were trailed by paparazzi, leading to a two-hour chase that put everyone involved in danger, according to a spokesperson for the couple. When asked for comment by People, the palace declined to address the matter.
At the same time, King Charles III and Queen Camilla visited St. Paul’s church, Covent Garden’s Apple Market and the Royal Opera House Arcade Wednesday morning to meet local people and representatives from the surrounding communities. Mayor Eric Adams shared his opinion on the incident: “It’s clear that the press, the paparazzi, want to get the right shot, they want to get the right story, but public safety has to be paramount,” he said to reporters, according to E! News. A spokesperson for the couple mirrored this sentiment, saying to People: “While being a public figure involves a certain level of public interest, it should never come at the expense of anyone’s safety.” This situation brings to mind the fatal paparazzi pursuit that caused Princess Diana’s death in 1997. Prince Harry has since reflected on his relationship with his mother in his book, Spare, describing the time he drove inside the Paris tunnel where his mother perished. “I thought driving into that tunnel would bring a brief moment of peace, or a cessation of the pain in that decade of relentless pain. Instead, it brought the beginning of the second part of pain,” he wrote. The couple’s spokesperson added: “This relentless pursuit, which lasted over two hours, caused multiple near collisions involving other motorists on the road, pedestrians, and two NYPD officers.”
Prince Harry’s experience with the press is particularly poignant, as it reminds us of the tragic death of Princess Diana. This incident involving the Duke and Duchess of Sussex serves as a stark reminder of the dangers of the paparazzi, and the importance of public safety.