What have the royals said about the conflict in Ukraine?

The Cambridges and Sussexes have released statements

‘We will give you arms’ Zelensky asks people to defend Ukraine during speech

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have issued a message of solidarity with the people of Ukraine as soldiers “bravely fight” an invasion by Russia.

In the early hours of Thursday morning, Russian president Vladimir Putin announced he had begun a “specialised military operation” with troops entering Ukraine from land, air and sea and missile strikes landing across the country, including its capital, Kyiv.

The invasion has triggered an international outcry and many world leaders have condemned Putin for launching an “unprovoked and unjustifiable” attack on Ukraine.

In a video message posted to Twitter on Friday evening, UK prime minister Boris Johnson said: “The scenes unfolding in the streets and fields of Ukraine are nothing short of a tragedy.

“The people of the United Kingdom stand with our Ukrainian brothers and sisters in the face of this unjustifiable assault on your homeland.”

Mr Johnson added that “Putin’s actions are leading to complete isolation for Russia”. “This crisis, this tragedy can and must come to an end,” he said.

Members of the royal family do not usually comment on political matters, with the Royal Family website stating that the Queen must “remain strictly neutral with respect to political matters”.

However, some royal family members, both in the UK and beyond, have now issued statements. Here’s what they have said.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were the first royal family members to make a statement.

In a post to their non-profit Archewell’s website, the couple condemned the actions of Russia, writing that they “stand with the people of Ukraine” and that world leaders should do the same.

Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and all of us at Archewell stand with the people of Ukraine against this breach of international and humanitarian law and encourage the global community and its leaders to do the same,” the post said.

Prince William and Kate Middleton

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have followed Harry and Meghan’s lead, voicing their support for Ukraine in a post to their official Twitter account on Saturday 26 February.

“In October 2020 we had the privilege to meet President Zelenskyy and the First Lady to learn of their hope and optimism for Ukraine’s future,” the message said.

“Today we stand with the President and all of Ukraine’s people as they bravely fight for that future,” they added, signing off with an emoji of the Ukraine flag.

Kate and William held an audience with President Zelenskyy and First Lady Olena Zelenska at Buckingham Palace in 2020.

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima

The King and Queen of the Netherlands issued a statement on Thursday 24 February in solidarity with the people of Ukraine, and those in the Netherlands with family in Ukraine.

“Our hearts go out to the people of Ukraine and everyone affected by the violence,” their statement said.

It continued: “Our thoughts are very much with the people there and with the Ukrainian community in the Netherlands, who will be anxious about the situation of their families and friends.”

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