Elton John defends Prince Harry, Duchess Meghan and Archie Harrison against ‘press intrusion’ as they return from France

By Zach Harper, with files from Sarah Walker

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and their three-month-old son Archie Harrison are back in the UK after a vacation to Nice, France where they reportedly stayed at Elton John and David Furnish’s home on the French Riviera. And now, Elton is speaking out against some of the reporting that emerged about their trip.

On Aug. 19, Elton tweeted that he paid for a private jet to bring the family of three to France, and says that he ensured the Sussexes’s journey was made carbon neutral by making a donation to the Carbon Footprint. Harry and Meghan, who are environmentalists, have received some criticism in the press for taking the jet, which Elton spoke out against in his tweets, evoking the late Princess Diana.

Elton had last seen Meghan and Harry at the European premiere of The Lion King in London in July. Photo: © Getty Images

“I feel a profound sense of obligation to protect Harry and his family from the unnecessary press intrusion that contributed to Diana’s untimely death,” he wrote, saying the reports made him “deeply distressed.”

“After a hectic year continuing their hard work and dedication to charity, David and I wanted the young family to have a private holiday inside the safety and tranquility of our home,” he continued. “To maintain a high level of much-needed protection, we provided them with a private jet flight.

“To support Prince Harry’s commitment to the environment, we ensured their flight was carbon neutral, by making the appropriate contribution to Carbon Footprint.”

Elton went on to urge media outlets to “cease these relentless and untrue” reports.

Elton and David were both guests at Meghan and Harry’s wedding in 2018, and Elton performed at a reception after the ceremony. Photo: © Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

This isn’t the first time this year that one of Meghan and Harry’s celebrity friends have defended them against the press. In February, George Clooney compared the trolling of Meghan, who was pregnant with Archie at the time, to the negativity that followed Diana.

MORE: Duchess Meghan’s friends open up about what she’s really like

“They’re just chasing Meghan Markle everywhere, she’s been pursued and vilified,” he said, according to Who magazine.

“She’s a woman who is seven months pregnant and she has been pursued and vilified and chased in the same way that Diana was and it’s history repeating itself... We’ve seen how that ends,” he said, alluding to the fatal car crash that killed Harry’s mother in 1997. Her driver was attempting to escape paparazzi at the time.

MORE: George Clooney defends Duchess Meghan, comparing her to Princess Diana

Meghan, Harry and Archie were also reported to have flown to Ibiza for a holiday to celebrate Meghan’s 38 th birthday earlier this month. Now that they’re back in the UK, they are expected to head to Balmoral to spend some time with the Queen, who has been enjoying her summer holiday at the Scottish Highlands estate.

We’ll next see Archie with his parents when the family heads to South Africa on royal tour this October. Harry is also expected to make separate trips to Botswana, Angola and Malawi.

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