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'I want you to hear the truth from me.' Prince Harry on the bittersweet decision to leave the royal family.

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After announcing their decision to step down as senior members of the British Royal Family, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have lost their “Royal Highness” titles.

Following a period of discussions, Buckingham Palace announced in a statement that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex would pay back the public money from their AUD$4.5 million renovation on Frogmore Cottage as they make the transition to split their time between North America and the United Kingdom.

Now, in a new speech, Prince Harry has said there was “no other option” but to step back from the Royal Family.

Mamamia’s daily news podcast, The Quicky, investigates Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s decision to leave the Royal Rota behind. Post continues below.

Speaking at a private charity dinner on Sunday night, London time, Prince Harry shared why he made the decision, adding that he wanted to share as much as possible about the situation.

“Once Meghan and I were married, we were excited, we were hopeful and we were here to serve,” he said.

“For those reasons, it brings me great sadness that it has come to this,” he added.

“The decision that I have made for my wife and I to step back is not one I made lightly.

“It was so many months of talks after so many years of challenges. And I know I haven’t always got it right, but as far as this goes there really was no other option.”

The Duke of Sussex added that he wanted to make it clear that they weren’t “walking away”.

“Our hope was to continue serving the Queen, the Commonwealth, and my military associations, but without public funding. Unfortunately, that wasn’t possible,” he explained.

“I’ve accepted this, knowing that it doesn’t change who I am or how committed I am. But I hope that helps you understand what it had to come to, that I would step my family back from all I have ever known, to take a step forward into what I hope can be a more peaceful life.”

 

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at tonight’s dinner for supporters of Sentebale in London Video © SussexRoyal

A post shared by The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (@sussexroyal) on

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The 35-year-old also thanked the crowd at the Ivy Chelsea Club in London for their support.

“I was born into this life, and it is a great honour to serve my country and the Queen,” he said.

“When I lost my mum 23 years ago, you took me under your wing,” he added.

“You’ve looked out for me for so long, but the media is a powerful force, and my hope is one day our collective support for each other can be more powerful because this is so much bigger than just us.”

In the speech, Harry also defended Meghan, who has come under fire in the tabloid media following the news.

“I have grown up feeling support from so many of you, and I watched as you welcomed Meghan with open arms as you saw me find the love and happiness that I had hoped for all my life. Finally, the second son of Diana got hitched, hurray!” he said.

“I also know you’ve come to know me well enough over all these years to trust the woman I chose as my wife upholds the same values I do. And she does, and she’s the same woman I fell in love with.

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You can read Prince Harry’s speech in full below:

The speech comes just 24 hours after the Queen released a statement, sharing her support for Harry, Meghan and Archie.

“I recognise the challenges they have experienced as a result of intense scrutiny over the last two years and support their wish for a more independent life,” the statement read.

“I want to thank them for all their dedicated work across this country, the Commonwealth and beyond, and am particularly proud of how Meghan has so quickly become one of the family.”

Buckingham Palace also released a statement, which confirmed the terms around Harry and Meghan’s withdrawal as senior royals.

The new model, which means the Duke and Duchess of Sussex won’t use their HRH titles, will take effect in the next few months.

Feature Image: Getty.

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