Prince Charles’ staff was crushed when Prince Harry, Meghan Markle romance overshadowed royal tour: book

Prince Harry's confirmation overshadowed his father's official tour of the Middle East

Prince Harry allegedly gave his father and the royal staff 20 minutes' notice before publicly defending the woman he loves.

The claim is being made in the upcoming bombshell book, “Finding Freedom,” written by royal reporters Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand. Numerous palace insiders came forward to the two journalists and detailed what led to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s departure as senior members of the British royal family.

The couple currently resides in Markle’s native Los Angeles with their son Archie.

On Monday, the U.K.’s DailyMail reported that the royal staff for Prince Charles, who is first in line to the British throne, was allegedly “crushed” when his youngest son confirmed that Meghan Markle, an American actress, was his girlfriend.

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Britain's Prince Charles is first in line to the throne.

Britain's Prince Charles is first in line to the throne. (Abir Sultan/Pool Photo via AP)

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According to the outlet, the 71-year-old and his staff were given just 20 minutes' notice before the declaration was made. The news, which stirred headlines across the globe, overshadowed his official tour of the Middle East.

“When Harry decided to make an official statement, the only stumbling block was Prince Charles,” the book alleged, as quoted by the outlet.

The outlet noted that the Prince of Wales had arrived in Bahrain to meet with the country’s King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa alongside his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.

“It was a critical moment that had been in the works for months,” the book claimed, as quoted by the outlet. “A statement from Kensington Palace condemning the press and, in the same breath, confirming Harry’s new girlfriend would all but eliminate coverage of Prince Charles’ tour of the Gulf. The palace decided to go ahead with the statement nonetheless, much of which was drafted by Harry himself.”

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Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex arrive at the annual Endeavour Fund Awards in London on March 5, 2020.

Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex arrive at the annual Endeavour Fund Awards in London on March 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

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“The team at Clarence House, which had spent months putting together Prince Charles’ tour in the hopes that it would be covered significantly, was crushed.”

The book also noted that while Charles “understood” the situation with Markle, 38, had “reached a tipping point,” he was still “disappointed” by the move.

“Harry had felt the need to prioritize the woman he loved over duty to the greater royal family,” the book claimed.

In 2016, Harry condemned the media for subjecting the American actress “to abuse and harassment,” issuing a rare statement that confirmed their relationship, while expressing concern for her safety.

Harry’s office said that while the prince understood there was significant curiosity about his private life, a line had been crossed in terms of media intrusion.

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In this Tuesday, July 10, 2018 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, and Meghan the Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry watch a flypast of Royal Air Force aircraft pass over Buckingham Palace in London.

In this Tuesday, July 10, 2018 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, and Meghan the Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry watch a flypast of Royal Air Force aircraft pass over Buckingham Palace in London. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

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"Prince Harry is worried about Ms. Markle's safety and is deeply disappointed that he has not been able to protect her," said the statement from Kensington Palace at the time. "It is not right that a few months into a relationship with him that Ms. Markle should be subjected to such a storm."

Tabloids in Britain and beyond jumped on the story and speculated about the relationship for weeks, with many commenting on her mixed-race heritage and contrasting her background with the prince's. The palace said the harassment was "very public — the smear on the front page of a national newspaper; the racial undertones of comment pieces; and the outright sexism and racism of social media trolls and web article comments."

While it was initially reported that Harry and Markle cooperated with the authors, reps for the couple confirmed to Fox News on Saturday that they played no part in the upcoming tell-all.

“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not interviewed and did not contribute to ‘Finding Freedom,’” said the statement. “This book is based on the authors’ own experiences as members of the royal press corps and heir own independent reporting.”

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Meghan Markle was a Hollywood actress before she became a member of the British royal family.

Meghan Markle was a Hollywood actress before she became a member of the British royal family. (Photo by Lars Niki/Corbis via Getty Images)

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According to the book’s description, “Finding Freedom” aims to set the record straight about the royal couple.

“For the very first time, ‘Finding Freedom’ goes beyond the headlines to reveal unknown details of Harry and Meghan’s life together, dispelling the many rumors and misconceptions that plague the couple on both sides of the pond,” read the book's description. “As members of the select group of reporters that cover the British Royal Family and their engagements, Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand have witnessed the young couple’s lives as few outsiders can.”

“With unique access and written with the participation of those closest to the couple, ‘Finding Freedom’ is an honest, up-close, and disarming portrait of a confident, influential, and forward-thinking couple who are unafraid to break with tradition, determined to create a new path away from the spotlight, and dedicate to building a humanitarian legacy that will make a profound difference in the world,” the description added.

In a statement sent to Fox News, the book publisher revealed Scobie is a London-based writer, royal editor for Harper’s Bazaar, an ABC News contributor, “Good Morning America” regular and host of ABC’s popular royal podcast, “The Heir Pod.” Durand is an Emmy Award-winning producer and writer who has spent nearly two decades working in London covering Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace, Clarence House and other major international events. During that time, she produced multiple interviews with members of the royal family including Harry. She contributes to O, The Oprah Magazine, Elle magazine and other American and British news outlets.

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Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout with Britain's Prince Harry on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, Scotland, Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018.

Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during a walkabout with Britain's Prince Harry on the esplanade at Edinburgh Castle, Scotland, Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018. (Andrew Milligan/Pool Photo via AP)

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“The aim of this book is to portray the real Harry and Meghan, a couple who continue to inspire many around the world through their humanitarian and charitable work but are often inaccurately portrayed," they wrote in a statement. "Our mission has been motivated by a desire to tell an accurate version of their journey and finally present the truth of misreported stories that have become gospel simply because of the amount of times they have been repeated. It is thanks to our sources that we have been able to share the definitive story of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex."

“Finding Freedom" is set to be released by Dey Street Books on August 11.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.