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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visited Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle on their way to the Netherlands for the Invictus Games.
This is the royal couple’s first joint visit to the UK since deciding to move to Montecito, California in March 2020 after stepping back as senior members of the royal family. A spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex confirmed their visit to People on Thursday.
Although this is the first time the royal couple have returned to the UK together, Harry has returned twice. Almost a year ago, he returned for the funeral of his grandfather, Prince Philip, in April 2021, then again in July 2021 to attend the unveiling of a statue in honor of his late mother, Princess Diana.
On Monday, a spokesperson for the royal couple confirmed that Markle would be alongside his wife in the Netherlands during the early days of the Invictus Games.
MEGHAN MARKLE JOINS PRINCE HARRY FOR INVICTUS GAMES IN THE NETHERLANDS
The international athletic competition was founded by Harry in 2014 for injured service members and veterans. This year’s event will take place from April 16-22 in the Dutch city of The Hague.
The former American actress had already joined the British prince at the Toronto Games in 2017, which marked their first appearance as a couple. They announced their engagement two months later.
This year’s Games were originally scheduled for 2020. However, they were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
But before they met, the royal couple were no strangers to troop support.
Harry, who served 10 years in the British Army, was a champion of causes that benefit both servicemen and women. He has been involved with the charity Walking with the Wounded and the Endeavor Fund, which honors veterans. Just days after welcoming son Archie in May 2019, he traveled to the Netherlands to kick off the official countdown to the 2020 Games.
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As for the former “Suits” star, she visited Afghanistan in December 2014 as part of a USO tour.
Markle became the Duchess of Sussex when she married Harry in May 2018 at Windsor Castle.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s departure from royal duties began in 2020 over what they described as British media intrusions and racist attitudes towards Markle. The family now resides in the coastal town of Montecito, California.
Since then, reports of an alleged split have emerged after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex gave an explosive interview to Oprah Winfrey last year, which was seen by almost 50 million people worldwide.
For their current visit to the UK, it has been reported that the couple have not brought their two young children with them.
The couple’s trip comes shortly after Harry’s legal team told a court hearing in February that the royal was unwilling to bring his children to his homeland as he was unsure whether to do so. Harry has launched a legal action against the UK government’s refusal to let him personally pay for police protection when he comes to Britain.
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While senior members of the British royal family enjoy taxpayer-funded police protection, Harry lost it when he and Markle stepped down as senior royals and moved to the United States. The couple said their decision was due to what they described as unbearable intrusions and racist attitudes from the British media.
Harry wants to be able to pay for his protection, saying his private security team in the United States does not have adequate overseas jurisdiction or access to British intelligence information.
Since the Duke and Duchess of Sussex lost their state-funded protection in the UK, they have privately paid for their own security in the US.
A representative for Markle and Prince Harry did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
Stephanie Nolasco of Fox News and The Associated Press contributed to this report.