Meghan Markle will join Prince Harry at the Invictus Games in Düsseldorf in September – in their first joint public appearance since May
- Meghan, 41, and Prince Harry, 38, will attend Invictus Games in September
- Read more: Is Prince Harry losing his star power?
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are set to attend the Invictus Games in Düsseldorf in September, it has been announced.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will jet over from their $14 million California mansion for the Invictus Games Düsseldorf 2023, the Paralympic-style event for servicemen and women founded by the prince.
The event will take just one day after the anniversary of the Queen’s death on 8 September, with the sporting contest taking place on 9-16 September.
According to German newspaper Rheinische Post, Meghan will moderate a farewell show for families and competitors on 16 which will be ‘very emotional’, while Harry will give the closing speech.
It’s unknown whether Harry and Meghan will visit the UK during their time in Europe, or whether their children Archie and Lilibet will join them for the two week trip.
Prince Harry, 38, and Meghan Markle, 41, are set to attend the Invictus Games in Düsseldorf in September, it has been announced
Last year, the couple visited the city for an official launch event for the contest, meeting officials and potential competitors, as well as athletes’ friends and family.
It was seen at the time as part of a pseudo-royal tour of the UK and Europe – where police closed junctions and set up miles of roadblocks so the couple and their entourage could avoid traffic jams.
City officials rolled out the red carpet but insisted the visit of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex was private.
They were protected by their own security team with the couple footing the bill.
Harry played an instrumental role in bringing the Games to the UK in 2014 when 300 competitors from 13 countries took part in the inaugural competition in London.
A trip to the Warrior Games in Colorado a year earlier had been the inspiration, as Harry saw first hand how sport helped inspire recovery and support rehabilitation of wounded troops.
The Invictus Games was where the couple chose to make their first public appearance together almost five years ago.
Meghan made her first appearance at an official engagement attended by Harry on September 24 2017 when she attended the Invictus Games opening ceremony in Toronto, Canada, although the pair sat about 18 seats apart.
The following day, the pair emerged hand in hand to make their first official public appearance together at the wheelchair tennis.
The joint appearance is scheduled to be the couple’s first since they attended the Women in Vision Award’s in New York back in May.
The Duke and Duchess will jet over from their $14 million California mansion for the Invictus Games Düsseldorf 2023, the Paralympic-style event for servicemen and women founded by the prince
At the time, they claimed to have been involved in a ‘near catastrophic car chase’ after the event.
The couple claimed the pursuit happened following their attendance at the Ms Foundation For Women’s 50th anniversary gala event – their first appearance at a public event together since the Duchess of Sussex missed the Coronation.
A spokesman for Harry and Meghan said the pair and Meghan’s mother Doria Ragland ‘were involved in a near catastrophic car chase at the hands of a ring of highly aggressive paparazzi’.
He added: ‘This relentless pursuit, lasting over two hours, resulted in multiple near collisions involving other drivers on the road, pedestrians and two NYPD officers.’
Paparazzi deny there were any near-crashes, while the New York Police Department said ‘numerous photographers’ made the couple’s journey ‘challenging’ but there were ‘no reported collisions, summonses, injuries, or arrests’.
Until this year, the royal couple were known for putting on a united front, including during the incendiary interview with Oprah Winfrey in March 2021.
Harry was also in the audience with schoolchildren in New York when Meghan promoted her book The Bench.
But as Harry released his explosive memoir Spare, which slammed his family and reveals that he killed 25 Taliban fighters, Meghan bwas notably absent from any promotion or interviews.
She allegedly stayed away because she would have been accused of ‘trying to steal the limelight’ – but also ‘media-savvy’ Meghan may have raised gentle concerns about whether the book was the right move, one insider told the Telegraph.
Meghan made her first appearance at an official engagement attended by Harry on September 24 2017 when she attended the Invictus Games in Toronto
The joint appearance is scheduled to be the couple’s first since they attended the Women in Vision Award’s in New York back in May
The source said: ‘Is this the way she would have approached things? Possibly not. But she will always back him and would never have got involved in promoting such a personal project. This was about his own life, his journey and his own perspective.’
The book’s release has coincided with Harry’s popularity dropping to an all-time low after the fallout from his memoirs – in both the US and the UK.
It was said by a source close to the couple that Meghan was ‘more wary’ about the extremely personal memoir than the prince was, adding she may have raised ‘gentle concerns’.
It has also been alleged that ‘truth bombs’ revealed in Harry’s book could have ‘dire consequences’ for his wife Meghan’s political ambitions.
The appearance comes amidst a difficult period for the couple, with experts saying Prince Harry has ‘begun to lose his star power’ and has become a ‘lightning rod for negative PR’.
The Duke’s sustainable tourism project Travelsyt announced that it has entered an ‘incredibly exciting’ era with a new board of directors – with no mention of the royal.
The independent non-profit organisation based in London was launched by the Duke of Sussex in 2019, when he was still a working royal, with wife Meghan.
Harry spent three years as the public face of the initiative to encourage the tourism industry to become more sustainable – despite a furore over his use of private jets.
But he was left out of a major announcement by the group in May about its transition from a ‘pilot phase’ to a new board of five people with ‘world-class expertise’.
PR experts said yesterday that Harry had become a ‘polarising figure’ and business would ‘second think their association’ with him amid the ‘negativity’ after his book Spare.
Brand and culture expert Nick Ede told MailOnline: ‘There is a problem with brand Harry and that’s that in the space of only a few years he has begun to lose his star power, authenticity and ability to elevate brands and good causes he believes in.’
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