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Harry, Meghan in 'near catastrophic' paparazzi car chase, spokesperson says



Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and the duchess's mother, Doria Ragland, have been involved in a "near catastrophic car chase" involving paparazzi photographers, a spokesperson for the prince says.

The spokesperson described the photographers as "highly aggressive" and said the pursuit lasted more than two hours on Tuesday night (Wednesday AEST).

It included "multiple near collisions" with other drivers, pedestrians and two New York Police Department officers, the statement said.

READ MORE: Three passengers injured on Air India flight from Delhi to Sydney due to turbulence 

"While being a public figure comes with a level of interest from the public, it should never come at the cost of anyone's safety," the spokesperson said, in a statement.

"Dissemination of these images, given the ways in which they were obtained, encourages a highly intrusive practice that is dangerous to all in involved." 

The NYPD is yet to comment on the alleged incident.

Meghan and Harry had attended the Ms Foundation's Women in Vision Awards in New York City on Tuesday, the duchess's first public outing since the coronation of King Charles.

Harry flew to England briefly to attend his father's crowning but Meghan stayed home in California with the couple's two children with the royal event the same day as son Prince Archie's fourth birthday.

Harry's mother, Princess Diana, died in a car crash as she was chased by paparazzi in Paris in 1997.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 16: (L-R) Doria Ragland, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex attend the Ms. Foundation Women of Vision Awards: Celebrating Generations of Progress & Power at Ziegfeld Ballroom on May 16, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images Ms. Foundation for Women)

Former royal protection officer Simon Morgan said two hours was a long time for such an incident to continue without any sort of intervention.

"I think it's an alarming development from the security perspective and certainly when we look back in history concerning the duke's mother, and we know the way that that tragedy unfolded," he told Sky News.

"So I think it's going to be extremely alarming and distressing for them.

"But I think there's going to have to be an investigation, maybe from NYPD as to what support mechanisms their security team was able to draw upon."

READ MORE: Police chase allegedly stolen car before it repeatedly crashed in Sydney's west 

More to come.

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