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Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle announce birth of daughter

LOS ANGELES (AFP) – Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced Sunday the birth of their daughter Lilibet Diana, who was born in California after a year of turmoil in Britain s royal family.

“Lili is named after her great-grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen, whose family nickname is Lilibet. Her middle name, Diana, was chosen to honor her beloved late grandmother, The Princess of Wales,” said a statement from the couple.

The child — the couple s second, who will be eighth in line to the British throne — was born Friday in Santa Barbara and was now out of the hospital and at home.

“She weighed 7 lbs 11 oz. Both mother and child are healthy and well, and settling in at home,” the statement said.

The couple, also known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, live near Los Angeles following their decision to quit frontline royal duties early last year.

The couple sat in March for a bombshell interview with US talk show host Oprah Winfrey, triggering the royal family s biggest crisis since Harry s mother died in a car crash in 1997.

During the two-hour sit-down, viewed by more than 17 million people in the US and over 11 million in Britain, Harry and Meghan said racism had played a part in them quitting the UK for North America.

The couple said a senior royal had speculated how dark their child s skin would be before he was born. Meghan s mother is Black and her father is white.

Meghan, a former actress, also told Winfrey she was “naively” unprepared for life as a royal and had contemplated suicide while pregnant with her first child Archie.

Harry, 36, and Meghan 39, accused newspapers of racial stereotyping, particularly set against coverage of Harry s sister-in-law, Kate, who is white.

Prince Harry was said to have a good relationship with his grandparents.

He told talk show host James Corden earlier this year that he had spoken via video call Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip since moving to the United States so they could see their great-grandson Archie.

Harry has spoken to his father multiple times since the Oprah interview came out, notably after Prince Philip s funeral, according to British media.

In a new documentary series released last month, Harry once again emphasized that his family turned a blind eye to the struggles of his wife, saying he will “never be bullied into silence.”

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