Thursday, June 13, 2024

King has no time to see Prince Harry on UK visit due to ‘full programme’

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By Natasha Preskey and Sean Coughlan, Royal correspondent,BBC News

Chris Jackson Prince HarryChris Jackson

Prince Harry speaks at an event marking 10 years of the Invictus Games on Tuesday

Prince Harry has arrived in the UK but will not see King Charles during his visit marking a decade of the Invictus Games.

A spokesman for the Duke of Sussex said this was due to his father’s “full programme” and that he “hopes to see him soon”.

Prince William will also not be at an Invictus event on Wednesday.

Harry was last in the UK in February to visit the King soon after he was diagnosed with cancer.

“The duke of course is understanding of his father’s diary of commitments and various other priorities and hopes to see him soon,” said a statement from Prince Harry’s spokesman.

Buckingham Palace is not commenting on the duke’s visit.

Prince Harry is in the UK to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Invictus Games, a competition for wounded and injured service men and women, both serving and veterans.

Chris Jackson Prince HarryChris Jackson

There will be a service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral in London, at which Prince Harry will give a reading and actor Damian Lewis will recite a poem.

But so far no other senior royals have been confirmed as guests at the service – with King Charles and Prince William not attending and Catherine, the Princess of Wales, also absent as she is undergoing cancer treatment.

After his visit to London, Prince Harry will visit Nigeria with Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex. The couple were invited by Nigeria’s chief of defence staff, who met Prince Harry during the Invictus Games held last year in Germany.

Birmingham in the UK and Washington DC in the US have been shortlisted as possible venues for Invictus in 2027.

Getty Images Prince HarryGetty Images

Last week, the King began a return to public engagements, having had to avoid crowds and public meetings after it was revealed that he had an unspecified form of cancer.

The treatment for that cancer is still continuing, but the King’s medical advisers have allowed him to start a gradual return to public engagements.

It remains uncertain how many of the traditional royal summer events the King will be able to attend.

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