Voice of The Mirror: Harry's had an accident; But we're not allowed to tell you.
St James's Palace last night banned all newspapers from revealing what happened to Harry, where and when it happened, or even what injuries he sustained.
In an extraordinary decision, the Palace press office insisted on a complete news blackout - claiming that because the incident took place in the grounds of Harry's school, Eton, it was "not in the public interest" and would invade the prince's privacy if published.
While WE know what happened, we can't tell you. Others may defy this order, but we would prefer the Palace to change their mind.
On the left we publish the astonishing warning letter from Prince Charles's deputy private secretary Colleen Harris - with all relevant details censored out.
To reassure you, we can say that Harry's injuries are NOT serious. But the accident was considered grave enough for him to be taken to hospital.
But we believe you are entitled to
know if an heir to the throne is involved in any accident, however small, if it results in injury.
Like other papers, we vowed to let William and Harry carry out their education in peace without the constant attention of photographers outside their school.
In accordance with that pledge, we rejected a set of photographs yesterday showing Harry and his injuries.
But for the Palace to try to suppress the details of this incident is a nonsensical farce.
Harry is third in line to be King of England. He is, therefore, one of the most important people in this country.
It follows that his health is also of vital importance to all of us.
We want to know if he is ill or has been injured. More than that, we have a RIGHT to know.
Not out of some prurient desire to invade his privacy. But because the people of this country should be informed of such matters.
The health of our Royal family and anything that might affect it is of significant public interest.
We hope that by tomorrow we will be able to tell you exactly what has happened to Harry. You will, we are sure, share our concern that he makes a swift and complete recovery.
And you will, we are equally sure, be bemused as to why the Palace would try and keep it quiet.
As we have said before, it is simply unrealistic for the public to be barred from knowing anything about William and Harry.
Common sense dictates that there will be stories from time to time which can and should be published, without fear of invading their privacy.
This is one such story.
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|Publication:||The Mirror (London, England)|
|Date:||Nov 19, 1998|
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