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Last Updated: Thursday, 13 January, 2005, 08:29 GMT
Harry says sorry for Nazi costume
Sun front page
Prince Harry was photographed at a friend's fancy dress party
Prince Harry has apologised for wearing a swastika armband to a friend's fancy dress party.

Clarence House issued a statement in response to a photograph published on the front page of the Sun newspaper under the headline, "Harry the Nazi".

It read: "Prince Harry has apologised for any offence or embarrassment he has caused. He realises it was a poor choice of costume."

But there have been calls for the prince to make his own public apology.

Tory leader Michael Howard told BBC Radio 4's Today programme Prince Harry should appear in person, rather than talk through a spokesman.

The Board of Deputies of British Jews said the costume was in "bad taste".

But they were "pleased" he had apologised for the incident.

"It was clearly in bad taste, especially in the run-up to holocaust memorial day on the 27th of this month, which the Royal Family will be taking a leading role in commemorating."

The picture was taken at the weekend at a friend's birthday party in Wiltshire, which had the fancy dress theme "colonial and native".
This young man has got to come up front and be seen in person making an apology
Dickie Arbiter
Ex-royal PR man

Prince Harry, 20, appears to be wearing a German desert uniform and a swastika armband. He is also holding a drink and cigarette.

Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain, of the Reform Synagogues of Great Britain, said: "The fact that the palace has issued an apology indicates that this was a mistake by the prince.

"But having been given, the apology should now be accepted."

But the Queen's former assistant press secretary, Dickie Arbiter, said: "This young man has got to come up front and be seen in person making an apology."

Former armed forces minister Doug Henderson MP said the picture showed the prince was "not suitable" for the prestigious royal military academy Sandhurst, which he is due to attend later this year.

"If it was anyone else, the application wouldn't be considered. It should be withdrawn immediately," said the Labour MP for Newcastle upon Tyne North.

The prince, who is third in line to the throne, hit the headlines last year after a scuffle with a photographer at a nightclub.

The Sun reported that Prince William was also at the party - dressed as a lion.

Reaction to the statement from Clarence House

Profile: Prince Harry
21 Oct 04 |  UK


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