The royal family is upset that a series of photographs of the Duchess of Cambridge bikini-clad on the beach have been published in Italian and Australian magazines.
The images that feature a four months pregnant Kate, showing her budding stomach in a bright blue halter-neck bikini while vacationing with husband Prince William on the secluded Caribbean island of Mustique were published Tuesday by Italian magazine Chi, and were later published by Australian magazine Woman’s Day.
St. James' Palace called the editorials, “a clear breach of the couple’s privacy,” as the Mustique is a private island where the paparazzi is banned.
According to the Daily Mail, Mustique’s private security team that patrols the island both on-and-off shore failed to find any paparazzi in the area where the Duke and Duchess relaxed on the beach.
While Woman’s Day Editor, Fiona Connolly, who gave the OK for the photos to be published in the women’s lifestyle magazine, insists that the photos were taken by a fellow vacationer on Mustique.
“This is not a hard decision. Kate's on a public beach, there are other holiday-makers there and she looks fabulous,” Connolly told News Ltd, adding that Australians do not consider the royal couple a “protected species.”
“The British have a great deal more sensitivity to royals than we do here in Oz,” Connolly continued.
“As Australians, we see this every day. We see pregnant women in bikinis on the beach -- and a public one at that -- so we are a lot less sensitive here.”
The editor noted that this is a far different situation than the incident that occurred in September 2012, when the French magazine Closer published topless photos of Middleton, taken while she and Prince William vacationed in the south of France.
She said that the photos are intended to show Kate in a positive light, following her hospitalization for extreme morning sickness in early December 2012 that lead to the announcement of her pregnancy. Connolly described the publishing of the photos as a “celebration” that the Duchess is doing well.
“Our readers are going to love these photos. I don't expect any backlash at all really. I think she's looking fabulous and healthy and (with) a beautiful bump, like we haven't seen her before,” Connolly said.
“[Kate] looks so much better than the poorly and sickly woman we saw coming out of hospital, which makes these photos more of a celebration.”
However, the other magazine that has published the photos, Chi, has a sullied reputation of publishing photos of the royals that likely should not have been made public. It was the Italian publication that published a photograph of Princess Diana as she lay dying after the paparazzi crash that ultimately took her life.
Chi was also among the magazines that published the photos of Middleton topless following the initial leak, before the French court ordered the images be removed from the public.
The magazine that headlined its current spread, “‘Kate and William – honeymoon for three” has not commented on the matter.
The Daily Telegraph reports that Chi paid about $156,000 for the images that are expected to soon be published in the United States, France and Germany, and were sold for an accumulative total of about $155,000. Woman’s Day reportedly paid $55,000 for the photos.