Prince Harry, actress Meghan Markle engaged – World

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In their first joint interview since announcing their engagement, Prince Harry said Monday that he and American actress Meghan Markle hope to start a family in the near future.

Harry made the comments in an interview with the BBC that aired hours after it was announced the couple was engaged earlier this month in London. They will tie the knot in spring 2018, according to a statement released by Prince Charles.

For her part, Markle told the BBC that “as naive as it sounds,” she had no idea how intense the interest would be once the two began a relationship. She said the couple faced “a lot of mistruths,” and she quickly decided not to read any media reports about them.

She said “of course it’s disheartening” that there was focus on her background as the daughter of a black mother and a white father.

Britain Royal Engagement

Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle pose for photographers on the grounds of Kensington Palace in London on Monday. (Matt Dunham/Associated Press)

The couple appeared before photographers on the grounds of Kensington Palace in London earlier on Friday.

“Thrilled, over the moon,” said Harry as he and his fiancée posed for photographs. Asked when he knew Markle was “the one,” he replied: “The very first time we met.”

Markle, who wore a white coat, said she was “so very happy” as she clutched her future husband’s arm tightly during their brief appearance. They left with their arms around each other.

How Prince Harry popped the question to Meghan Markle0:46

She showed off a dazzling three-stone ring, designed by Harry himself. At its centre is a diamond from Botswana, which his office said was a place special to the couple. The main stone is flanked by two diamonds taken from the personal collection of Harry’s late mother Princess Diana. 

Markle’s parents, Thomas Markle and Doria Ragland, also released a statement congratulating the couple on their engagement and wishing them “a lifetime of happiness.”

Britain Royal Engagement

A close-up of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle shows the engagement ring she was wearing Monday. (Matt Dunham/Associated Press)

“Our daughter has always been a kind and loving person. To see her union with Harry, who shares the same qualities, is a source of great joy for us as parents,” the statement said.

Meghan Markle was raised in the Los Angeles area. Her father is a TV lighting director for soaps and sitcoms, her mother a yoga instructor and psychotherapist.

Who is Meghan Markle?

  • She has had various acting roles, but is also known for her humanitarian work, serving as a United Nations women’s advocate and representing World Vision.
  • Markle was living in Toronto in recent years for filming of the USA Network legal drama Suits. She was cast in the role of Rachel Zane in 2011, but the latest TV season wrapped last month with no word on whether she’ll continue with the show.
  • In 2015, she helped design dresses for Canadian retailer Reitmans and promoted the collection in series of TV ads.
  • She was born in Los Angeles on Aug. 4, 1981. to a father of Irish descent and an African-American mother.
  • Markle attended a private elementary school in Los Angeles and later a private, all-girls Catholic high school in the Hollywood Hills.
  • She married film producer Trevor Engelson in September 2011 in Jamaica. They divorced in August 2013.

A short statement from Prince William and his wife Catherine expressed their excitement. 

“It has been wonderful getting to know Meghan and to see how happy she and Harry are together.”

Prince Charles, visiting a school Monday in southern England, said the news was “very  good,” and added he was “thrilled for them both. They’ll be very happy indeed.”

Meghan Markle on the early reaction to her royal relationship0:37

Harry and Markle, who is divorced, met in July 2016 in London “through friends,” Markle told Vanity Fair in September.

In that interview, Markle made it clear the world’s attention on her romance did not faze her.

“I’m still the same person that I am, and I’ve never defined myself by my relationship,” she said. “The people who are close to me anchor me in knowing who I am. The rest is noise.”

She also told the magazine that the two were “in love.” The frank and open statement about a royal relationship was seen as a break with tradition.

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