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Skipping royal Christmas

Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex have confirmed they will not spend Christmas with British monarch Queen Elizabeth II.

The couple have joined the Queen and other royals for their traditional festive celebrations at Sandringham House in Norfolk, England for the past two years, since their 2017 engagement, but reports claimed they were making other plans for Christmas 2019.

Buckingham Palace officials confirmed the news in a statement, explaining the new parents and their six-month-old son Archie would instead spend the holiday season with the Duchess' mother, Doria Ragland.

"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are looking forward to extended family time towards the end of this month," the statement read. "Having spent the last two Christmases at Sandringham, Their Royal Highnesses will spend the holiday this year, as a new family, with the Duchess' mother Doria Ragland.

"This decision is in line with precedent set previously by other members of the Royal Family, and has the support of Her Majesty The Queen."

It is not clear whether the couple will travel to Meghan's native U.S. to visit her mother, or whether they will host her at their home, Frogmore Cottage in Windsor, England.

Harry has previously always spent holidays at the Queen's Norfolk estate except for 2012 when he was on duty with the British Army in Afghanistan.

Royal biographer Ingrid Seward said the decision may be down to the difficulties of looking after a young baby.

"Christmas at Sandringham can be quite stressful so perhaps they don't want to go with Archie at such a young age," she explained to British newspaper The Sun.

The Duke and Duchess have had a difficult year, and recently launched two legal cases against U.K. tabloid newspapers, with Harry publicly expressing anger at his wife's treatment by the media.



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