Only two days after Queen Elizabeth II's state funeral, preparation and plans began taking shape for King Charles III's May 6, 2023 coronation. This is to be Britain's first coronation after 70 years; the last coronation was of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. While that event went smoothly, following centuries old protocols, this occasion is already presenting some thorny issues. The largest concern is whether or not King Charles' younger son, Harry, and his wife, Meghan, will appear at the May coronation. While they have received an invitation, they have not as yet responded. Additionally, the Montecito, California-based couple have presented the palace with a list of demands they want met in order to guarantee their presence.
According to Marie Claire, the pair asked that their children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet, be included in the Westminister Abbey proceedings, though the children have not been invited. Leaked plans show that the Prince and Princess of Wales’ three children—Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis—will all three play starring roles in the landmark event, The Mirror reports.
They have also asked that their family of four be permitted to appear on the Buckingham Palace balcony together with the rest of the royal family at the conclusion of the ceremony. Additionally, as May 6 is the fourth birthday of their son, Archie, the Sussexes have made it known that they want an acknowledgement of that, despite the occasion being one of state and not one of family.
Royal expert, Angela Mollard, says she can predict that at least one of their demands is out of the question. She told OK—they will not be on the Buckingham Palace balcony alongside working members of the royal family. “The latest thing they’ve said is they want to be on the balcony for the coronation, while not giving a confirmation themselves that they’re going to be there,” she says. “This is five weeks out. They need some planning around this. They need to know whether to set aside the chairs.”
The Sussexes also have security concerns. Prince Harry has routinely requested armed police protection for any trips to Britain. The prince instigated legal action against the Home Office for its refusal to grant this. In July 2022, the High Court did grant him the right to bring part of his claim against the Government.
It is believed the case may go before the High Court in early April, but there is no way of knowing whether a ruling will be reached before the coronation. There have also been increased concerns over general safety following Harry's decision to write about the number of Taliban he killed, and his cavalier thoughts while taking their lives. In his memoir, “Spare,” Prince Harry recalls killing 25 Taliban militants while serving as an Apache helicopter co-pilot gunner in Afghanistan in 2012-2013. He writes that he viewed the enemy combatants as pieces being removed from a chessboard, “Baddies eliminated before they could kill Goodies.”
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