Meghan Markle, Prince Harry will not return to royal roles, palace confirms

The news comes days after the announcement of their sit-down interview with Oprah

As confirmed in a statement from Buckingham Palace this morning, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry will not return to royal roles. 

It’s been almost a year since the Duke and Duchess of Sussex left full-time royal work for a “12-month review period.” In January of 2020, Harry and Meghan announced they would step back as senior members of the royal family, which officially went into effect in March. Now, according to statements from both the Queen and the royal couple themselves, it seems their total break from the royal family is permanent.

Read More: Oprah to interview Prince Harry and Meghan Markle for rare TV special

Commonwealth Day Service 2020
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex (L) and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex on March 9, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

The official statement from Buckingham Palace reads, “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty The Queen that they will not be returning as working members of The Royal Family. Following conversations with The Duke, The Queen has written confirming that in stepping away from the work of The Royal Family it is not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service.”

The “responsibilities and duties” referred to in the statement are their royal patronages which include all involvement in U.K. charity work that comes with being a member of the royal family. The Duke and Duchess seemingly reference that particular aspect in their own response statement.

The official statement from the Duke and Duchess reads, “As evidenced by their work over the past year, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex remain committed to their duty and service to the U.K. and around the world, and have offered their continued support to the organisations they have represented regardless of official role. We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.”

The couple declaring that they can still be of service outside of the royal family is certainly interesting timing. Meghan and Harry have been busy establishing themselves for the past few months, even announcing their own Archewell Foundation in December, a non-profit organization “dedicated to feeding communities negatively impacted by natural disasters.”

Per the official statement, the duties and responsibilities will be redistributed “among working members of The Royal Family.” Markle will no longer serve as patron of the National Theatre. Prince Harry will be stripped of his honorary military appointments, which sources close to the family say will be “painful” for the Duke of Sussex.

Read More: Meghan Markle, Prince Harry surprise poetry class for Black History Month

All eyes are on the royal couple now as this news comes days after the announcement of their official televised sit down with Oprah. Entitled Oprah With Meghan and Harry: A CBS Primetime Special, the Duke and Duchess are said to cover everything about their experience thus far.

Gayle King recently announced on CBS This Morning that, “nothing will be off limits” in the must-watch interview. 

Oprah With Meghan and Harry: A CBS Primetime Special  airs Sunday, March 7  at 8 p.m. EST on CBS.

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