Prince Harry refuses to answer questions on how he will 'protect the Queen'

The Duke of Sussex previously said he wanted to make sure his grandmother was 'protected'

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The Duke of Sussex and Duke of Cambridge have faced questions about Harry’s controversial comments about ensuring the Queen was “protected” and his apparent snub to the Prince of Wales.

The royal brothers, who have a troubled relationship, were confronted with the fallout from the duke’s chat with a US television network that left some royal commentators denouncing Harry.

Harry is in the Netherlands supporting his Invictus Games while his older brother William was carrying out an official visit to the London headquarters of the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC).

William was asked by a female broadcaster “sir, does the Queen need protecting?” as he left the organisation’s offices with Kate, but the couple did not respond.

Prince Harry
Prince Harry

In his interview with NBC’s Today show the Duke of Sussex appeared to issue a veiled warning to those closest to the Queen saying he wanted to make sure his grandmother was “protected” and had “the right people around her”.

Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, attend the opening ceremony of the Invictus Games in The Hague, Netherlands
Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, attend the opening ceremony of the Invictus Games in The Hague, Netherlands

The duke did not elaborate on whether he was referring to royal aides or members of his own family, but his comments are likely to have deepened his rift with his father the Prince of Wales and his brother and perplexed palace officials.

He side-stepped co-presenter Hoda Kotb’s question if he missed his father or brother, and instead said: “For me at the moment I’m here focused on these guys and giving everything I can 120% to them to make sure they have the experience of a lifetime.”

Harry was questioned after he left a venue in The Hague, where he had been watching a powerlifting event, and as he was driven away on an electric buggy he was asked by a reporter if had managed to wish the Queen, who turned 96 on Thursday, “happy birthday”.

The duke turned away without speaking and ignored another journalist who asked: “How do you feel about the reaction to your interview, sir?”

As the buggy pulled away another journalist asked “How are you going to protect the Queen, sir?” but got no response.

In his NBC interview Harry also said he did not know if he will return to the UK to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, saying there are “security issues and everything else”.

And he appeared to commit his immediate future to the US, saying: “Home for me now is, you know, for the time being, it’s in the States, and it feels that way as well.”