Prince Harry has addressed rumours that King Charles III is not his biological father in a court statement, wondering whether such stories in a section of the press were aimed at ousting him from the Royal Family, according to media reports.
The Duke of Sussex made the statement last week at the High Court in London. Prince Harry and others are suing Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN) over alleged unlawful activities. MGN has denied that its senior figures were aware of any wrongdoing.
During the trial, Prince Harry has underlined how newspapers claimed that his biological father was James Hewitt, and not King Charles III. In 1995, Prince Harry’s mother, Princess Diana revealed during an interview that she had an affair with James Hewitt, her riding instructor.
Prince Harry referred to an article published in The People on December 15, 2002, with the headline “Plot to rob the DNA of Harry”, and said that such articles “felt very damaging and very real to him”.
“At the time of this article and others similar to it, I wasn't actually aware that my mother hadn't met Major Hewitt until after I was born (in 1984),” Prince Harry said in a witness statement viewed by Newsweek.
The 38-year-old added, "This timeline is something I only learnt of in around 2014, although I now understand this was common knowledge amongst the defendant's journalists.”
Terming the news articles “hurtful, mean and cruel”, Prince Harry said that the stories always left him questioning their motive. “Were the newspapers keen to put doubt into the public's minds so I might be ousted from the royal family?" he said.
Prince Harry had also addressed the rumour in his memoir "Spare", mentioning that King Charles would often make cruel and unfunny jokes about not being his biological father, an NDTV report said.
"Pa liked telling stories, and this was one of the best in his repertoire. He'd always end with a burst of philosophizing ... Who knows if I'm really the Prince of Wales? Who knows if I'm even your real father?" Harry wrote in an excerpt of his memoir released on January 10, per NDTV.
Hewitt, a former cavalry officer in the British Army, famously had an affair with Princess Diana from 1986 to 1991, and took place while Diana was still married to Charles, according to the Independent. which cited Hewitt’s book Princess In Love.
Diana and Charles were married in 1981, with Diana giving birth to Prince William in 1982 and Harry in 1984, the Independent said in an article, adding that she and Charles officially divorced in 1986.
Prince Harry, on June 7, gave evidence to the High Court in London pertaining to the allegations that British tabloids phone-hacked him.
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