London: Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, said she had given an in-depth interview to US chat show host Oprah Winfrey because she was finally free to speak for herself now she and husband Prince Harry had quit royal duties.
Meghan, 39, and Queen Elizabeth’s grandson Harry, 36, stunned the royal family in January last year by announcing they would step down from their official royal roles to forge a new, independent life in California.
The split was confirmed last month, and, in the last week, the couple and Buckingham Palace have engaged in an increasingly bitter war of words, amid claims of lies, bullying and smears.
“I’m ready to talk,” Meghan, a former American actress, told Winfrey in an excerpt shown on US station CBS ahead of the broadcast on Monday AEDT, as she explained why she had agreed to the interview.
“As an adult who lived a really independent life to then go into this construct that is different than I think what people imagine it to be, it’s really liberating to be able to have the right and the privilege in some ways to be able to say yes.”
Harry and Meghan married in May, 2018, becoming global celebrities combining British royalty and Hollywood glamour.
But less than two years later, they stepped away from official duties, saying the media intrusion was overbearing. Meghan later revealed she felt “unprotected” by the monarchy while pregnant with son Archie.
Their decision to give the interview to Winfrey has been criticised by some newspapers as hypocrisy, flying in the face of their stated desire for privacy.
“We have the ability to make our own choices in a way that I couldn’t have said yes (to a previous request for an interview). That wasn’t my choice to make,” Meghan told Winfrey, a guest at their wedding, in the excerpt.