Death of Queen Elizabeth II: could it favor the reconciliation of Enrique and Meghan with the family?

The death of Queen Elizabeth II could help initiate a reconciliation of Prince Harry and his wife Meghan with the rest of the royal family, after an alleged estrangement and their move to live in the United States.

The couple, who were in Britain when the queen died on Thursday, joined Harry’s brother William and his wife Catherine at Windsor Castle on Saturday. It was the first public appearance of the four together since 2020.

Dressed in black, they looked together at the floral offerings left by the public before greeting people, without giving signs of the state of relations between the two couples.

But the decision of the four to appear together before the cameras seemed to be a sign of progress in mending broken ties.

According to the specialized press on British royalty, William, the heir to the throne, reached out to his younger brother, who has been critical of the family since he abandoned royal duties.

Two days earlier, the situation was very different: Enrique, 37, arrived alone in a vehicle at Balmoral, Scotland, where the queen had died shortly before.

Guillermo and others close to the family, not including Catalina, had previously arrived in a single car.

Richard Fitzwilliams, a royal specialist, said Thursday that the fact that the brothers arrived separately showed that they were “estranged”. Harry and Meghan are seen as having caused “a lot of damage to the royal family in recent months” with their anti-monarchy comments, he added.

“In the future, the ball is in their court and it depends on how they want to play,” he added.

Princes William and Harry appeared with their wives Kate and Meghan at Windsor Castle, where they viewed flowers and tributes in honor of the late Queen Elizabeth II. – Photo: Video capture taken from Twitter (@SussexPrincess)

Different ways

After the death of Diana, the mother of the princes, in a traffic accident in Paris in 1997, the brothers shocked the world when they walked behind her coffin in the funeral procession. Guillermo was 15 years old and Enrique was only 12.

As adults they seemed very close and this continued after William married his long-term girlfriend, Kate Middleton, in 2011. But after Enrique’s marriage in 2018 to Meghan, an American actress, the relationship began to weaken.

Enrique said in a 2019 interview that he and his brother were following “different paths.” A year later, he and Meghan announced their move to the United States.

In an explosive interview of the couple with Oprah Winfrey, in March 2021, Meghan claimed that Catalina made her cry. They also claimed that a royal, whom they did not identify, speculated about the skin color of the couple’s future child, since Meghan is mixed-race. William reacted by saying that the royal family is “not at all” racist.

Relations between the brothers were clearly distant when they met again last year to unveil a statue of their mother. Nor did they meet for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in June.

More recently, Meghan told the magazine The Cut that she now feels “free” to tell her own story, which some saw as a veiled threat to the monarchy.

unpredictable

However, since Elizabeth II’s death there have been signs of a possible easing of the estrangement.

Although Henry told Winfrey that his brother and father were “stuck” in the monarchy, Charles seemed open to reconciling with his son in his first speech as king, expressing “love” for him and Meghan.

“He is offering an olive branch, but he is offering it with great care because he knows they are unpredictable,” Fitzwilliams said.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are hugely popular with young people, but openly criticizing the monarchy could be a big risk, he added, especially at a time of national mourning.

“There is no doubt that the Sussexes will attract a lot of attention at the moment”highlighted the specialist, now that British public opinion is firmly on the side of the rest of the family.

Her appearance with William and Catherine, who became the Prince and Princess of Wales after Charles’s rise to the throne, could open a new chapter in family relations.

But all this could change with the expected publication of Enrique’s memoirs at the end of the year. “Obviously they will go to the funeral, but more than that, it’s impossible to say,” Fitzwilliams said.

*With information from AFP.

Death of Queen Elizabeth II: could it favor the reconciliation of Enrique and Meghan with the family?