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Meghan tells Oprah she cannot be ‘silent’ if Royal Family is ‘perpetuating falsehoods’

Written by on 4 March 2021

The Duchess of Sussex has said she could not be expected to “just be silent” if the Royal Family is playing an “active role” in “perpetuating falsehoods” about her.

Meghan made the remarks in a teaser clip for her heavily anticipated TV interview with Oprah Winfrey.

The clip has been released after Buckingham Palace confirmed it will investigate “very concerning” bullying allegations from the duchess’ time as a working royal.

Harry and Meghan are expected to lift the lid on their short period fulfilling royal duties together during their interview with Winfrey next week.

The couple stepped back from their roles to pursue a new life in America last year.

The duchess says she is not afraid of the consequences of speaking out during the 30-second teaser, before adding that “a lot… has been lost already”.

Winfrey asks Meghan: “How do you feel about the Palace hearing you speak your truth today?”

She replies: “I don’t know how they could expect that, after all of this time, we would still just be silent if there is an active role that The Firm is playing in perpetuating falsehoods about us.

“And, if that comes with risk of losing things, I mean, I … there is a lot that has been lost already.”

FILE - In this Tuesday, July 10, 2018 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, and Meghan the Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry watch a flypast of Royal Air Force aircraft pass over Buckingham Palace in London. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are to no longer use their HRH titles and will repay ..2.4 million of taxpayer's money spent on renovating their Berkshire home, Buckingham Palace announced Saturday, Jan. 18. 2020. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, File)                                                                                                                        Image: Buckingham Palace is investigating bullying claims against Meghan

What else are Harry and Meghan known to have said during the interview?

Prince Harry has told Winfrey his fear of “history repeating itself” was part of his reason for stepping back from royal duties.

In one of two promo clips released by CBS earlier this week, Harry said: “I’m just really relieved and happy to be sitting here talking to you with my wife by my side.”

As a photo was shown of him as a child with his mother, Princess Diana, he continued: “Because I can’t begin to imagine what it must have been like for her going through this process by herself all those years ago, because it’s been unbelievably tough for the two of us.

“But at least we have each other.”

Another clip shows Harry saying: “My biggest concern was history repeating itself.”

The rest of the clip was dominated by Winfrey saying such statements as: “You said some pretty shocking things here,” and “almost unsurvivable – sounds like there was a breaking point?”

Meghan was not heard in either of the two clips.

What are the bullying allegations?

Buckingham Palace said on Wednesday that it is investigating claims Meghan bullied former royal staff.

Meghan and Harry will not be part of the process and it is understood the palace hopes to start the investigation soon.

Past and present employees are to be invited to speak in confidence about their experiences of working for Meghan, after it was alleged she drove out two personal assistants and staff were “humiliated” on several occasions.

The Times newspaper has reported the duchess “destroyed” one member of staff and another was left in tears before she departed.

There has long been speculation about the atmosphere in the Sussex household after a number of staff left.

Jason Knauf, the Sussexes’ former communications secretary, made a bullying complaint in October 2018 in an apparent attempt to force Buckingham Palace to protect staff.

A source suggested the attitude to the allegations was more about making them “go away” rather than “addressing” them, with the paper claiming Mr Knauf’s complaint was never progressed.

Harry and Meghan's interview with Oprah could be a difficult watch for the Royal Family Image: Harry and Meghan’s interview with Oprah could be a difficult watch for the Royal Family

The Times has chronicled what it describes as “turmoil” within the palace walls.

They claim a number of sources said Meghan wanted to be a “victim” so her “unbearable experience” would convince Harry they had to leave to the UK – something her lawyers have denied.

The monarchy’s “men in grey suits” have been accused of being aware of the alleged actions of the duchess and of doing “absolutely nothing to protect people”.

What have the Sussexes said about the bullying allegations?

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have said they are the victims of a calculated smear campaign.

Lawyers for the couple have said the claims are based on “misleading and harmful misinformation”.

They also said Harry and Meghan believed staff were comfortable and happy.

Meghan’s spokesman said: “The duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma.

“She is determined to continue her work building compassion around the world and will keep striving to set an example for doing what is right and doing what is good.”

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What has Buckingham Palace said about the allegations?

Buckingham Palace has said it is “very concerned” about the allegations in The Times “following claims made by former staff of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex”.

The palace statement continues: “Accordingly our HR team will look into the circumstances outlined in the article. Members of staff involved at the time, including those who have left the household, will be invited to participate to see if lessons can be learned.

“The royal household has had a dignity at work policy in place for a number of years and does not and will not tolerate bullying or harassment in the workplace.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he “certainly won’t” be passing comment on the latest developments regarding the Royal Family.

He told broadcasters during a trip to Teesport in the North East: “I think that politicians, the best thing politicians can do on all these questions is really to bite their tongue.”

Oprah Winfrey at Harry and Meghan's wedding in May 2018 Image: Oprah Winfrey at Harry and Meghan’s wedding in May 2018

When will the interview be aired?

Harry and Meghan’s interview is set to be broadcast on CBS in the US on Sunday 7 March at 8pm EST.

It will then be aired at 9pm on ITV on Monday 8 March for UK audiences and at 9:30pm on RTE for viewers in Ireland.

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