LONDON -- Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, on Thursday denied that the British royal family is racist after his brother Harry and Harry’s wife, former US actress Megan Markle, made the allegations in an interview on US television.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex told Oprah Winfrey the royal family had expressed concerns over the colour of their son Archie’s skin.
Leaving an event at a school in London, William told a reporter his family was “very much not racist”.
He also said that he had not spoken to his brother since the interview aired on Sunday night on US television.
On Tuesday, Buckingham Palace said that it was "saddened' after learning of the suffering expressed by the duke and duchess of Sussex and acknowledged that the issues they exposed in the interview are "concerning," especially "that of race."
"The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan," Buckingham Palace said in a short public statement released on behalf of Queen Elizabeth II.
"The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately," the palace added, going on to say that "Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members."
The British government has kept silent regarding the accusations the royal couple made in the interview, although the Labor opposition has called for an investigation into the "serious" complaints of racism within the House of Windsor.
Meghan told Winfrey that at least one member of the royal family had raised "concerns" and there had been "conversations" about “how dark” Archie’s skin color would be while the duchess - whose father is white and whose mother is black - was still pregnant.
The duke, in turn, confirmed the racism the couple suffered was "in large part" the reason why they decided to abandon the UK and move to North America, adding that he had had difficulty dealing with the "bigoted" British press and had felt "trapped" within the royal family, known colloquially as the ‘firm’.
Meghan also told Winfrey that life within the royal family felt suffocating, adding she felt isolated but received little or no support and was instructed not to seek outside mental health help, given that doing so could reflect poorly on the monarchy.
"I just didn't want to be alive anymore," the duchess said in the interview.