Prince Andrew may lose armed protection in major 'security downgrade'

WION Web Team London, London, Great Britain (UK) Jan 17, 2020, 12.42 PM(IST)

File photo: Prince Andrew Photograph:( Reuters )

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The Home Office is recommending a major downgrade of the security given to Prince Andrew but only after receiving a review by the Metropolitan Police. 

The Duke of York, Prince Andrew could be stripped off his round-the-clock armed police protection services after he withdrew from public duties but the final decision still rests in the hands of the home secretary, Priti Patil and the prime minister, Boris Johnson.

The Home Office is recommending a major downgrade of the security given to Prince Andrew but only after receiving a review by the Metropolitan Police. 

This comes at a time when Buckingham Palace is very much involved in discussions over security measures for the Sussexes in their forwarding roles in UK and Canada.

According to a senior source, the Metropolitan Police had completed the review and ‘conclusions have been reached and recommendations made.’

However, the Home Office and the Metropolitan Police Service have refused to give any comments on the claims made. Buckingham Palace policy is not to 'comment' on security measures.

Prince Andrew, 59, was effectively forced to step down from royal engagements and quit his royal duties following his disastrous BBC Newsnight interview over his links with the late financier and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

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“A review was ordered into the Met’s protection of HRH The Duke of York once it was announced that he was stepping down from royal duties in November,” a source said.

Prince Andrew and Duke and Duchess of Sussex until now were internationally protected people. It would also mean that the prince either having no bodyguards or having to pay for them himself.