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Queen Elizabeth II has stripped all of Prince Andrew’s military titles and royal patronages days after reports surfaced that her son, the Duke of York, will face a civil trial in New York after his motion to dismiss Virginia Giuffre’s sexual assault case was dismissed.
Buckingham Palace released a statement on Thursday evening that read: “With The Queen’s approval and agreement, The Duke of York’s military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to the Queen. The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen.”
Although His Royal Highness title which was bestowed on him at birth has not been removed, the prince has, at the Queen’s request, accepted he will no longer use the title in a professional capacity.
Reports suggest that the monarch broke the news to her second son in person on Thursday.
The swift actions from the Queen came up after Prince Andrew finally broke his silence on the latest legal development that will see him face a civil trial.
His spokesperson said, “Given the robustness with which Judge Kaplan greeted our arguments, we are unsurprised by the ruling. However, it was not a judgement on the merits of Ms. Giuffre’s allegations. This is a marathon, not a sprint and the Duke will continue to defend himself against these claims.”
Royal patronages are, effectively, a figurehead position at a charity or other organizations. Prince Andrew earlier gave up over 230 of these, including patronage of the English National Ballet, Commonwealth Golfing Society, and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, after his disastrous interview in 2019 on “Newsnight”
The interview was widely mocked following Prince Andrew’s statement that he had been at a pizza restaurant in Woking on the night Giuffre alleges he sexually assaulted her and that he was “medically” incapable of sweating, in response to Giuffre’s recollection of him “sweating profusely” as he danced in a nightclub.
Daily Express newspaper reported that Prince Andrew managed to cling onto a “handful” of patronages after the interview, mostly consisting of golf clubs who were reluctant to give up the allure of a royal figurehead.
Following the Queen’s intervention, Prince Andrew has now given up his remaining patronages.
Because the Queen is head of the British armed forces, with the power to bestow honorary military appointments, Prince Andrew also had a number of titles in the Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, and Army including Colonel of the Grenadier Guards, Colonel-in-chief of the Royal Irish Regiment, and Royal colonel of the Royal Regiment of Scotland.
These have also now been removed, leaving the prince a “private” citizen, despite his royal birth.
The Queen’s intervention, which comes in the year of her jubilee, celebrating 70 years on the throne, follows Wednesday’s news that a New York judge had thrown out Prince Andrew’s motion to dismiss Giuffre’s civil case.