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Posted at: May 17, 2018, 5:20 PM; last updated: May 17, 2018, 5:20 PM (IST)

Meghan Markle confirms father will not attend royal wedding

Meghan Markle confirms father will not attend royal wedding
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. File photo

London, May 17

After days of speculation, Royal bride-to-be Meghan Markle on Thursday confirmed that her ailing father will not attend her wedding with Prince Harry in Windsor Castle on Saturday.

The 36-year-old former American actress said Thomas Markle Sr needed to focus on his health, confirming media reports that he had to undergo a heart procedure.

He is understood to be in Mexico.

“Sadly, my father will not be attending our wedding. I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health,” Markle said in a statement issued by Kensington Palace today.

“I would like to thank everyone who has offered generous messages of support. Please know how much Harry and I look forward to sharing our special day with you on Saturday,” the statement added.

There had been widespread speculation over Thomas’ attendance at the wedding ceremony after allegedly staged paparazzi photographs sold for a reported 100,000 pounds—in a breach of royal etiquette ahead of the meticulously planned big day.

The former Hollywood lighting director was quoted as saying that he hated the idea of missing “one of the greatest moments in history and walking my daughter down the aisle”.

Markle’s half-sister, Samantha Markle, recently said she was the “culprit” who urged their father to stage the photos in a bid to improve his image. She said her father had “suffered at the hands of the media” and had decided “enough is enough” but the entire incident had affected his health.

Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland, who divorced her father many years ago, is now expected to step into the role of walking her daughter down the aisle. — PTI

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