Disabled veterans ‘are frustrated senior royals are shunning Invictus Games amid row with Harry and Meghan’: Buckingham Palace ‘looks petty by saying more about the Highland Games’ and family ‘ill will should not be held against competitors’, sources say
- The royal family hasn’t commented on the Prince’s event for a number of years
Veterans have become frustrated that the Invictus Games are not getting the attention from senior royals which other sporting events enjoy – with Buckingham Palace looking ‘petty and mean-spirited’ by not paying it enough attention, it has been claimed.
Earlier this month King Charles attended the Highland Games – an event which was a firm favourite of his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II – with the Duchess of Cornwall.
They were joined by Anne, Princess Royal, and her husband Sir Timothy Laurence at the games which have been a part of Scotland’s culture for hundreds of years.
But no such appearances have been made in Dusseldorf, Germany, where the Invictus Games are being held.
There is now a sense of frustration among some British athletes that their endeavours are not recognised by public figures – including senior royals – who are quick to send good wishes to competitors in other international events, The Telegraph reports.
Critics argue the royal family’s ‘ill-will’ towards Harry should not be held against the disabled veterans who are competing.
The lack of attention paid to Prince Harry ‘s Invictus Games by the Buckingham Palace ‘looks petty’ and ‘mean-spirited’ a media strategist has said. Meghan Markle and the Duke pictured at the games on Wednesday
King Charles and Queen Camilla attend the Braemar Highland Gathering on September 2
In 2014 the then Prince Charles, Duchess of Cornwall and Prince William attended the opening ceremony of the first ever Invictus Games in London. But the royal family hasn’t commented on the event for a number of years.
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An anonymous UK media strategist said: ‘It’s ironic Buckingham Palace has had more to say about the Highland Games than the Invictus Games, despite the honorary military roles they hold.
‘In doing so, the palace ends up looking mean-spirited and petty. The ill will against Harry should not be held against the Invictus competitors.’
Former Royal Marine Ben McBean said he understood both sides of the ‘rift’ between the brothers but added that they should have put their differences aside.
Mr McBean, who lost both an arm and a leg in Afghanistan and inspired Prince Harry to start the games, added that the team should’ve had a shout-out.
And a Team UK insider said the athletes find the lack of support from public figures ‘bizarre’ but don’t want to get caught up in the ‘royal crossfire’.
An official within the UK team told The Telegraph that due to the event getting bigger and bigger and the royal family’s recent focus on sporting competitions, there could have been more support from back home.
Palace sources reportedly say that members of the Royal family never involve themselves in each others’ professional endeavours, and they would not expect the Duke to voice support for the finalists of William’s Earthshot Prize, for example.
The Prince and Princess of Wales were integral in the early stages of the Invictus Games.
Meghan was was as enthusiastic as ever at the games with Prince Harry
On Tuesday, Meghan Markle joined the Duke at the games held at the Merkur Spiel-Arena
Prince William, Prince of Wales, pictured in the stands during the Rugby World Cup France 2023
September 9, Marseille: The Princess of Wale supports her favorite team for the England versus Argentina rugby match
September 10, Bordeaux: Prince William during the Rugby World Cup in France
King Charles III and Queen Camilla during The Braemar Gathering 2023 at The Princess Royal and Duke of Fife Memorial Park on September 02
The Royal Foundation, which was shared by Prince Harry at the time – invested significant amounts of money in the event.
Meanwhile Harry’s brother Prince William continued with his charity work yesterday in London, visiting a building site to discuss the mental health of construction workers.
READ MORE: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle step out with ‘superman’ former Marine and Invictus Games silver medalist Mark Ormrod who lost three limbs in Afghanistan
His sister-in-law Kate has also been carrying out royal visits this week, going to HMP High Down in Surrey on Tuesday to learn more about the work of an addiction charity.
King Charles III visited Tomintoul in the Cairngorms where he was welcomed by primary school children and community stalwarts.
The Invictus Games is one of the big projects that Prince Harry has continued since his departure from the royal family.
He was given a hero’s welcome in Germany by those attending the latest iteration of the competition he founded for wounded and disabled military veterans.
Harry arrived at the event trailed by dozens of excited schoolchildren who had been given time off from studies to attend.
Harry has said he plans to attend as many events as he can during the week-long competition.
On Tuesday, Meghan Markle joined the Duke at the games held at the Merkur Spiel-Arena, where the pair were seen smiling and rejoicing as they watched numerous sporting events.
The Duchess was seen sporting a stars and stripes badge as she cheered her home country on during the wheelchair basketball game between USA and France yesterday.
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