A special place. Prince Harry discussed his love for wife Meghan Markle and late mother Princess Diana as a way to show his connection to Africa in his keynote speech at the United Nations on Monday, July 18.
“Since I first visited Africa at 13 years old, I’ve always found hope on the continent. In fact, for most of my life, it has been my lifeline, a place where I have found peace and healing time and time again,” the Duke of Sussex, 37, explained during his appearance at the U.N. General Assembly Hall in New York. “It’s where I’ve felt closest to my mother and sought solace after she died, and where I knew I had found a soulmate in my wife. And it’s why so much of my work is based there.”
In honor of Nelson Mandela International Day, Harry addressed various worldwide issues — with a specific focus on the continent of Africa.
“As happens so often in history, the consequences of some of the most powerful people in some of the wealthiest countries are being felt even more deeply across the continent of Africa,” the U.K. native, who arrived with Meghan, 40, at the event, said. “The pandemic, the war and inflation have left Africa marred in a food and fuel crisis, the likes of which we have not seen in decades. Worse still, this comes at a time when the Horn of Africa is enduring one of the longest droughts it’s faced in close to half a century.”
Harry and Meghan, who share son Archie, 3, and daughter, Lilibet, 13 months, previously visited Africa during the first weeks of their courtship in 2016. They went on to exchange vows two years later. The royal’s mother, Princess Diana, also made trips to Africa for various humanitarian causes ahead of her death in 1997.
Earlier this month, Harry opened up about his mother’s legacy on what would have been her 61st birthday.
“Today, we’re reflecting on what would have been my mother’s 61st birthday. And this year is also 25 years since her passing,” he said during a virtual appearance on July 1. “There isn’t a day during the past two and half decades where I haven’t thought about the mark she left not only on me and my brother [Prince William], but on all of our lives.”
He added: “My mother instilled in me, and in all of us, a drive to speak up and fight for a better world. And now, as a husband and a parent, my mother’s voice is even stronger in my life.”
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