Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Announce 'Transition' to Step Back From Royal Duties

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their decision Tuesday to "step back as 'senior' members of the Royal Family." In a lengthy post shared with their followers on Instagram, the couple, who have been dogged with scathing reports since their marriage back in 2018, revealed that they will work to become "financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen" from both the UK and North America.

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"After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution," the couple announced. "We intend to step back as 'senior' members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment."

"We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honour our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages," the statement continued. "This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity. We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support."

Although the Duke and Duchess of Sussex did not specify where in North America they will take up residence, Markle is from California, where her mother, Doria Ragland, currently resides. In recent months, rumors have swirled that the Sussexes, who share son Archie, would move to Canada, where they visited over the holidays. Markle had previously called Toronto home during her time on the series Suits.

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The Wednesday announcement came after months of tabloid pressures. Along with rumored feuds between Markle and her sister-in-law Kate Middleton and between Harry and older brother Prince William, Harry also sued several tabloids.

Harry is sixth in line to the British throne, falling behind his father Prince Charles, brother Prince William, and William's three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis.