Prince Harry has released a rare statement confirming his relationship with actress Meghan Markle and condemning the "abuse" she and her family have received online and in the media.
The statement, released via Kensington Palace's social media, reveals that Markle, a Canadian actress, has been subjected to a "wave of abuse and harassment" since news broke a week ago that the pair were dating.
It confirms that the couple are "a few months into a relationship".
Markle is best known for her role in US drama Suits, and has featured on the front page of many British newspapers in the past few days.
The statement slams the racist, sexist attitudes of the media. It warns the media that "this is not a game" and that a line has been "crossed".
"Some of this has been very public - the smear on the front page of a national newspaper; the racial undertones of comment pieces; and the outright sexism and racism of social media trolls and web article comments.
"Some of it has been hidden from the public - the nightly legal battles to keep defamatory stories out of papers; her mother having to struggle past photographers in order to get to her front door; the attempts of reporters and photographers to gain illegal entry to her home and the calls to police that followed; the substantial bribes offered by papers to her ex-boyfriend; the bombardment of nearly every friend, co-worker, and loved one in her life."
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