Edward, Sophie Criticized for Giving Photo of Themselves to Caribbean Hosts


Queen Elizabeth II’s youngest son, Prince Edward, and his wife, Sophie, Countess of Wessex have gained criticism on the internet for presenting Saint Lucian Primary Minister Philip J. Pierre with a signed photograph of themselves on a modern royal take a look at.

The presentation of the photograph shaped section of a classic and official exchange of gifts during the royal couple’s ongoing tour of the Caribbean. The tour has by now been satisfied with criticism coming in the wake of the hotly debated tour of the space carried out by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in March. The Cambridge tour was accused of struggling a series of main PR blunders which involved improperly picked out picture prospects and engagements with colonialist undertones.

Edward and Sophie had been photographed presenting a signed photograph of themselves to Pierre on the to start with working day of their visit to Saint Lucia very last week. Provided the new conversations surrounding colonialism and insensitive royal image chances which plagued the Cambridge tour, this shift by the Wessexes was not satisfied favorably on the web.

Edward Sophie Wessex Photo Presentation
Prince Edward and wife, Sophie, Countess of Wessex offered a signed photograph of them selves to Saint Lucian Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre o their tour of the Caribbean. April 22, 2022.
Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images

Nadine White, race correspondent for The Unbiased, highlighted the picture on Twitter, crafting: “#ICYMI: Prince Edward & Sophie gave the PM of St Lucia a framed image of them selves as a present soon after visiting the country as part of their Platinum Jubilee tour.”

In yet another tweet, White posted a near-up image of Pierre’s reaction, creating: “A higher-res photo of St Lucia PM, Philip J. Pierre, getting his reward from the Wessexes.”

Rossalyn Warren, Reuters viewers editor, commented on the absurdity of the Wessexes’ present, telling followers on Twitter: “when I pay a visit to another state I also give the resort a framed photo of myself as a thank you.”

Journalist Ricardo Brooks voiced disbelief at the gesture, which bears resemblance to some of the improperly selected image possibilities of the Cambridge’s Caribbean tour. This bundled the Cambridge’s posing for photos with locals at the rear of a chain url fence and showing up to recreate pictures of the queen and Prince Philip dressed in white in the 1960s.

Brooks wrote: “These persons are so tone deaf it is really incredible.”

NYU legislation professor Melissa Murray also highlighted the absurdity of the reward in distinction to the broader concerns encompassing the tour, submitting to Twitter: “When they’re offering out autographed pics but what you *truly* want is reparations.”

The topic of reparations has develop into increasingly reviewed in relation to customers of the royal household subsequent the Cambridge’s tour, with numerous activists and protest groups citing grievance with a 2015 speech by then-British Prime Minister David Cameron on a visit to Jamaica. In the speech, he stated he hoped all included would “shift on” from the “agonizing legacy” of slavery.

In advance of the Wessexes tour they ended up issued an open letter from the Antigua and Barbuda Reparations Help Fee which thorough the royal family’s historic backlinks with the transatlantic slave trade and warned the couple versus displaying “phony sanctimony” as other royals have performed on preceding tours.

The letter also charged the pair to “phone for reparations,” stating that “every person in your loved ones proceeds to are living in the splendor, pomp and prosperity attained by the proceeds of the crimes [of slavery].”

These phone calls, which ended up echoed on William and Kate’s excursions of Belize, Jamaica and the Bahamas, as perfectly as the criticism of the perceived PR blunders, have specified rise to discussions about the validity of royal tours in their current variety moving forward.

Sophie Wessex Prince Edward Photo
Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex’s signed presentation photograph provided to Saint Lucian Primary Minister, Philip J. Pierre, April 22, 2022.
Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Photos

Talking on Newsweek‘s The Royal Report podcast, royal biographer Omid Scobie stated that he thinks a fashionable components for undertaking royal tours was adopted by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle when they visited South Africa in 2019 but that considering the fact that then it has been discarded.

“I think we have noticed in the previous the place a tour has been able to set the tone from the very commencing,” Scobie instructed chief royal correspondent Jack Royston.

“I recall currently being in briefings for the Sussex’s tour of southern Africa and how it was Buckingham Palace workers who truly went out of their way to say that this tour would be a little distinct. That the few would be conscious of the politics in the regional parts that they ended up browsing, that we would not be observing condition dinners, that there would not be the expensive wardrobes that you’re applied to on a royal excursion.

“So that was evidence that at just one point the palace did know how to make these points get the job done in a modern setting.”

Scobie was not by itself in his evaluation that the present-day formulaic way in which royal excursions are run is out-of-date.

Subsequent the Cambridge’s go to to the Caribbean, Day by day Mail columnist Jan Moir wrote: “What this 7 days confirmed is that the times of the major royal abroad visit are undoubtedly numbered.

“The extremely thought that the Royal Loved ones should sally forth, in all their finery and jewels, to faraway lands to meet up with individuals they hope to bow and curtsey to them, or pay out homage at the pretty minimum, is an escalating absurdity.”

Prince Edward Sophie Wessex Philip Pierre
Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex fulfilled with Primary Minister of Saint Lucia Philip J. Pierre all through their tour of the Caribbean. Photographed (L) in Sweden, June 19, 2010. And Prime Minister Pierre, (R) photographed on April 22, 2022.
Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Visuals/Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Visuals

Edward and Sophie Wessexes tour of the Caribbean, visiting Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Antigua and Barbuda, concludes on Thursday.

Initially, the couple’s go to was to include things like a prevent on the island of Grenada but a statement launched by Buckingham Palace in advance of the trip’s graduation go through: “In session with the Authorities of Grenada and on the suggestions of the Governor General, The Earl and Countess of Wessex’s pay a visit to to Grenada has been postponed. The Earl and Countess hope to stop by at a later on date.”

No even further clarification for this “postponement” was offered nevertheless it provoked a disappointed response from reparations activists on the island.

Talking to the Every day Telegraph, Arley Gill, chairman of the Granada countrywide reparations committee, commented that: “We required the royal few to go again to the queen and to let her know that Grenada is owed reparations by her spouse and children and Great Britain. They will need to be knowledgeable that we want reparations for all that they have done in the past.”

For extra royal news and commentary look at out Newsweek’s The Royal Report podcast:
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