Prince Harry Attends Palace Exhibit with Donald Trump After Trump's 'Nasty' Meghan Markle Comment
Harry was without his American wife Meghan Markle, who is currently on maternity leave after giving birth to their son Archie on May 6
Prince Harry joined other members of the royal family, including Queen Elizabeth, for a palace exhibit at Buckingham Palace following President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump‘s arrival in the U.K. for their first state visit.
Harry was without wife Meghan Markle, who is currently on maternity leave after giving birth to their son Archie on May 6. (However, fans hope to see Meghan in her first post-baby appearance this Saturday at the Trooping the Colour celebrations.)
After attending a private luncheon hosted by the Queen, Harry joined President Trump, the first lady, his daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner to view a special exhibition in the Picture Gallery, which showcased items of historical significance to the United States from the Royal Collection. Upon entering the room, Harry soon peeled off to chat to Earl Peel, the Lord Chamberlain.
The outing comes just hours after Trump insisted he had not said anything “bad” about Meghan Markle. Last week, The Sun published an Oval Office interview with the president in which he reacted with surprise at learning Meghan had criticized him during the 2016 campaign, labeling him “misogynistic.”
“I didn’t know that she was nasty,” Trump said of Meghan.
Trump soon disputed that he had made the remark at all, despite the interview being recorded. He also praised Meghan and wished her well following the birth of her son.
But, speaking with reporters at the White House on Sunday night as he prepared to head to London, he declined to apologize or clarify what he said — again insisting there was no quote to discuss.
“I made no bad comment,” he said.
Prince Harry previously met the first lady in Sept. 2017 ahead of the Toronto Invictus Games — the multi-sport international event Harry created specifically for wounded, injured, or sick armed services personnel. The two then sat together at the Opening Ceremony.
Later on Monday evening, the Queen will give a state banquet dinner at Buckingham Palace. Neither the Duke or Duchess of Sussex will be at the State Banquet. However, both Kate Middleton and Prince William will be in attendance.
Monday’s itinerary also includes President Trump and Mrs. Trump visiting Westminster Abbey for a short tour by Prince Andrew and to lay a wreath at the Grave of the Unknown Warrior.
Afterwards, the Trumps will join Prince Charles and Camilla for afternoon tea at their home, Clarence House.
The visit marks President Trump’s first state visit to the U.K., though he made a working visit last summer.
Following their U.K. trip, the first couple will travel to France on June 6 to mark the D-Day anniversary there in Normandy.
Trump was first invited for a state visit — an offer that must be extended by the Queen — in 2017 right after being sworn into office. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama previously visited in 2011, and before them President George W. Bush and First Lady Bush visited in 2003. (The Queen has made four state visits to the U.S., most recently in 2007.)
But Trump’s official state trip was repeatedly delayed, with speculation that it was due to worries over protests. Among other controversies in his relationship with Britain, Trump sparked intense backlash in June 2017 after he attacked London’s mayor in the wake of a terror attack there.
In July, he met with the Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle amid the expected protests about his working trip. A “Stop Trump March” in London drew tens of thousands of people.
Ahead of his Monday visit, demonstrators were reportedly planning to take over Trafalgar Square in central London. Funds were being raised by the Facebook group “Together Against Trump – Stop the State Visit” to fly a giant balloon of a baby Trump, similar to last year, when the president made a working visit to the U.K.
“This is about sending a strong message that people in the U.K. don’t accept the divisive right-wing policies that Trump stands for, and that inviting him for a state visit is totally inappropriate,” the Stop Trump Coalition said in a statement.