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Queen finally breaks silence on Meghan and Harry's Oprah interview

Following Oprah's interview with the couple, the "saddened" monarch says her family will address the issues brought up, adding that "some recollections may vary."

UK headlines after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle lifted the lid on life inside Buckingham Palace with an explosive interview. 
Ben Stansall/AFP via Getty Images

Ever since the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's devastating interview with Oprah aired Sunday night, the public has wondered what the queen thought. Wonder no more. Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Harry's grandmother, issued a statement on Tuesday that walks that very careful queenly line between defending the palace and supporting the royal couple.

"The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan," the brief statement begins. "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. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members."

The race issue mentioned likely refers to the royal couple telling Winfrey someone in the royal family raised "concerns and conversations about how dark (their son Archie's) skin might be when he was born." 

In the interview, Prince Harry said he will never reveal the name of the person who discussed this with him, only to say it was not the queen or her husband, Prince Philip.

Reaction to the queen's statement varied from tepid to supportive.

"Not good enough at all," wrote one Twitter user. "If there is a future monarch that has expressed racist opinions, then the 'taxpayer' has a right to know about it. Woeful response." Wrote another, "They waited 24 hours to produce a whole lot of nothing." 

Some responses supported the monarch, however. "A dignified and appropriate response from the royal family, unlike the interviewees' handling of the alleged issues," one person tweeted.  

The interview even found its way into US government business. On Monday, a reporter asked President Joe Biden's press secretary, Jen Psaki, about the interview. While Psaki did not say whether the president or First Lady Jill Biden had watched the interview, she praised the couple's courage for speaking up, and reiterated that the US and UK have a strong relationship.

The interview is now available to rewatch online.