Duke of Sussex sees probe into Diana interview as ‘drive for truth’

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The Duke of Sussex views the inquiry into the BBC Panorama controversy surrounding the interview with his mother Diana, Princess of Wales, as a “drive for truth”, it has been claimed.

It is believed that Harry will not comment publicly on the investigation into Martin Bashir’s 1995 interview, but sources close to him have told The Daily Telegraph that he is getting regular updates on what is happening and supports the move.

Harry and his wife Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, stepped away from royal duties and moved to the US earlier this year.

It came amid speculation that Harry’s relationship with his brother William, the Duke of Cambridge, may have become strained.

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A source told the Telegraph: “You do not need a public statement to imagine how he (Harry) is feeling privately, people know how much his mother means to him.

“He has bravely spoken out in the past about loss and grief, and the immense impact it has had on him.

“Sadly, some people are not just seeing this as a drive for truth, but also trying to use this as an opportunity to try to drive a wedge between the brothers.”

Both Harry and William have previously spoken of their grief after their mother died in a Paris car crash in August 1997.

On Friday, the dukes’ uncle and Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer, said he is “not at all satisfied” with the parameters of the inquiry, led by retired judge and former master of the rolls Lord Dyson.

He tweeted: “As I’ve told the BBC this evening, I’m not at all satisfied with the parameters they’ve set around their enquiry into the @BBCPanorama interview with Diana of 25 years ago tonight.

“Lord Dyson must be free to examine every aspect of this matter, from 1995 to today, as he sees fit.”

The BBC has insisted that the investigation has a sufficiently broad scope.

A spokesman for the corporation said: “The review is fully independent and the terms are suitably broad and wide-ranging.

“We hope that everyone will support Lord Dyson’s work in establishing the truth.”

The explosive Panorama interview famously featured Diana saying: “Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.”

The investigation will consider if the steps taken by the BBC and Bashir were appropriate and to what extent those actions influenced Diana’s decision to give an interview.

It will also examine what knowledge the BBC had in 1995 and 1996 of “mocked up bank statements purporting to show payments to a former employee of Earl Spencer (and) the purported payments to members of the Royal Households”, the corporation said.

The BBC says Diana had written a note saying she did not see the false bank statements and they played no part in her decision to give the interview.

On Thursday, TV watchdog Ofcom said it will not launch its own investigation into the BBC Panorama controversy, but will follow the independent inquiry “closely”.

William has previously welcomed the investigation, saying it “should help establish the truth behind the actions” that led to the programme.

The BBC said Bashir, who is now its religion editor, is currently signed off from work, recovering from quadruple heart bypass surgery and with significant complications from having contracted Covid-19 earlier in the year.

The princess sent shockwaves through the monarchy with the interview, which included candid details about her marriage and the Prince of Wales’s rumoured relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles, his now wife.

Diana also questioned Charles’s suitability as king.

A month later, the Queen urged the separated couple to divorce, which they did in 1996.

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