In a statement released on Thursday, January 13, Buckingham Palace said, 'With The Queen’s approval and agreement, the Duke of York’s military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to The Queen.' They add that he will now defend his ongoing sexual abuse case as 'a private citizen'.
A statement from Buckingham Palace regarding The Duke of York: pic.twitter.com/OCeSqzCP38
— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) January 13, 2022
The unprecedented move comes after it was announced that Andrew’s final attempt to have Virginia Giuffre’s civil sexual assault case thrown out of a US court was denied, meaning that he will now have to give full testimony under oath ahead of a major trial this fall.
A royal source told Harper's Bazaar that the roles were handed back with 'immediate effect' and will be redistributed to other working members of the Royal Family, which would include Prince William, Kate Middleton, Princess Anne, Prince Edward, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.
The source adds that the decision was 'widely discussed' amongst family members and that it was also decided that the roles will never return to the Duke of York—regardless of the outcome of Giuffre’s civil case. He will also no longer be allowed to use the style 'His Royal Highness' in any official capacity.
Prior to the announcement, there had been mounting pressure from campaign groups and members of the public for Andrew’s military honours to be removed. This morning it was revealed that anti-monarchy group Republic had sent a letter to the Queen signed by 152 British military veterans urging the monarch to remove her son from all military positions and ranks.
Anti-monarchy group @RepublicStaff have sent a letter to the Queen signed by 152 UK veterans urging her to remove Prince Andrew from all military positions and ranks: “Were this any other senior officer it is inconceivable that he would still be in post.”https://t.co/R6rTif1CLW pic.twitter.com/WcABYdjpMB
— Omid Scobie (@scobie) January 13, 2022
'We understand that he is your son, but we write to you in your capacity as head of state and as Commander-in-Chief of the Army, Navy and Air Force,' the letter read. 'These steps could have been taken at any time in the past eleven years. Please do not leave it any longer.'
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