Prince Harry returns to UK following King's cancer diagnosis

The Duke of Sussex flew into London on Tuesday afternoon to reunite with his father.

The Duke of Sussex has returned to the UK after making an emergency dash from the US to see the King following his cancer diagnosis.

Harry flew in on Tuesday afternoon ready to be reunited with his father, despite the pair’s troubled relationship.

The duke cleared his diary and made the journey alone, with the Duchess of Sussex and their children Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet remaining at home in California.

Royal watchers have expressed hopes that Harry and Charles will be reconciled in the wake of the King’s shock diagnosis, with suggestions the duke could also makes attempts to try to heal his long-running rift with his brother, the Prince of Wales.

The King, who is said to be resting at Clarence House, began treatment for an undisclosed cancer on Monday after the disease was discovered while he was being treated for an enlarged prostate.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak revealed more of Charles’s condition, saying he was thankful the King’s cancer has been “caught early” as he wished him a full recovery.

Charles, 75, who has postponed all his public duties, has already begun his medical care as an outpatient under the supervision of his specialist team of doctors.

His niece Princess Beatrice, who has a home in St James’s Palace next to Clarence House, was seen leaving the grounds on Tuesday morning, driving away from the back entrance.

Meanwhile, the Princess Royal held the fort on the royal engagements front, carrying out an investiture on behalf of the King at Windsor Castle.

Rishi Sunak said he was left “shocked and sad” when he was told about the King’s diagnosis.

He told BBC Radio 5 Live: “All our thoughts are with him and his family. Thankfully, this has been caught early.”

The Prime Minister said that everyone will be hoping the King “gets the treatment that he needs and makes a full recovery”.

“That’s what we’re all hoping and praying for, and I’m of course in regular contact with him and will continue to communicate with him as normal.”

Asked what it meant for the day-to-day running of the country, Mr Sunak said “we’ll crack on with everything”.

Buckingham Palace confirmed the King, who only acceded to the throne 17 months ago, does not have prostate cancer, saying only that it was a “form of cancer”.

Charles was diagnosed after a “separate issue of concern was noted” and investigated while he was being treated for his benign prostate condition.

Harry’s black Range Rover was pictured arriving at a private terminal at Los Angeles International Airport before he boarded a flight due to land around midday, UK time, according to The Sun.

He last appeared alongside the Windsors at the King’s coronation, but hurried home immediately afterward to mark his son Prince Archie’s fourth birthday.

The duke’s allegations against his family appeared unrelenting in the aftermath of his Oprah interview, and, in the months following the Queen’s death, his Netflix documentary and memoir Spare.

There were accusations of racism in relation to Archie’s skin tone before he was born – with the remarks in the end alleged to have come from two senior royals – and claims Kensington Palace lied to protect William over reports he allegedly bullied Harry out of the royal family.

Harry claimed Charles was jealous of Meghan and Kate, did not hug him when he told him his mother Diana, Princess of Wales had died, and said he believed the King was “never made” for single parenthood, but “to be fair, he tried”.

The duke also accused William of physically attacking him and throwing him into a dog bowl in a row over Meghan, teasing him about his panic attacks, and, along with Kate, encouraging him to wear a Nazi uniform at a fancy dress party.

Charles, according to Harry, pleaded with his sons during a tense meeting after the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral: “Please, boys. Don’t make my final years a misery.”

While Charles and Harry were said to still speak, William has reportedly not been in contact with his brother for an extended period of time.

William is returning to official duties this week beginning with an investiture on Wednesday – the same day the King usually holds his weekly audience with the PM.

The heir to the throne is expected to also be undertaking some duties on his father’s behalf, but Counsellors of State, who are appointed temporarily when a monarch cannot fulfil their duties as head of state, are not expected to be needed.

The King will still be dealing with his red boxes of state business and official papers, and holding Privy Council meetings, which can be held via video, and audiences with the Prime Minister, which can take place over the phone.

Charles personally called both Harry and William, as well as his siblings Anne, the Duke of York and the Duke of Edinburgh, to give them the news before it was publicly announced to the nation by the Palace at 6pm on Monday.

The Palace has called for the King’s privacy to be respected, especially during his treatment, but said he wanted to make his diagnosis public because of his long-running support for cancer charities.

This is the latest major royal health scare to hit the monarchy at the start of 2024, coming after the King’s hospital stay, Kate’s major surgery, keeping her away from official duties until after Easter, and Sarah, Duchess of York’s skin cancer diagnosis.

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