Meghan and Harry brand Sun apology over Clarkson column ‘PR stunt’

The piece, in which Clarkson said he hated' Meghan, became the IPSO's most complained-about article.

Meghan and Harry brand Sun apology over Jeremy Clarkson column ‘PR stunt’ Getty Images

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have branded an apology by The Sun newspaper over Jeremy Clarkson’s column “nothing more than a PR stunt”.

The piece, in which Clarkson said he “hated” Meghan, became the Independent Press Standards Organisation’s (Ipso) most complained-about article.

On Friday, The Sun newspaper said it regrets the publication of the column and is “sincerely sorry”.

But on Saturday, a spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex said Meghan had not been contacted by the newspaper to apologise.

The spokesperson said: “The fact that the Sun has not contacted The Duchess of Sussex to apologise shows their intent. This is nothing more than a PR stunt.

“While the public absolutely deserves the publication’s regrets for their dangerous comments, we wouldn’t be in this situation if The Sun did not continue to profit off of and exploit hate, violence and misogyny. A true apology would be a shift in their coverage and ethical standards for all. Unfortunately, we’re not holding our breath.”

In the column, which The Sun said has since been removed from its archives as well as its website, Clarkson wrote that he had dreamed of Meghan being paraded through British towns and publicly shamed, adding that “everyone who’s my age thinks the same way”.

The comments attracted criticism from high-profile figures, politicians, and his own daughter, Emily Clarkson.

The TV presenter said he had made a “clumsy reference to a scene in Game Of Thrones” in the piece.

Writing on Twitter, Clarkson said he was “horrified to have caused so much hurt” following the backlash and that he would “be more careful in future”.

In its statement, The Sun said: “Columnists’ opinions are their own, but as a publisher we realise that with free expression comes responsibility. We at The Sun regret the publication of this article and we are sincerely sorry.”

The controversy followed the recent broadcast of Harry and Meghan’s explosive six-part Netflix documentary, in which the couple made allegations of mistreatment by the royal family.

The first three episodes saw Meghan accuse the British media of wanting to “destroy” her and claim “salacious” stories were “planted” in the press.

Meghan took the publisher of The Mail on Sunday – Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL) – to court, after it published parts of a personal letter to her father, Thomas Markle, winning the case in 2021.

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