KEY POINTS

  • A TV host claimed Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's New York City trip was full of "empty gestures" and "hypocrisy"
  • The commentator also accused the couple of wanting to "play royals" after stepping back as working royals last year
  • The Sussexes were in the Big Apple for the Global Citizen Live concert, where they called for vaccine equity

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have been criticized for allegedly treating their recent three-day trip to New York City like a "royal tour" after quitting royal duties last year.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex made headlines last week after they arrived in the Big Apple for their first joint visit to the city and their first appearance together since welcoming their second child in June. While fans and supporters were glad to see the couple making public appearances again, Sky News Australia host Andrew Bolt accused Prince Harry and Markle of "hypocrisy."

"Has there been a more self-serving and hypocritical royal tour than the one that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle just orchestrated in New York?" he said on "The Bolt Report." "I mean, so shameless. In fact, it was fake."

The commentator suggested that the couple's recent tour appeared to go against Prince Harry's statement that he "never wanted to be treated like a royal." Bolt referenced the Sussexes' March interview with Oprah Winfrey where the duke said he'd always wanted to be normal and preferred to be called "Harry" rather than "Prince Harry."

"Well, he might want to be treated normal, but Meghan Markle obviously very much wants to play the royals. Off they went to New York with a cameraman in tow, apparently, to film it all for their Netflix documentary," Bolt claimed.

The host further claimed that Prince Harry was clearly wired for sound and Markle dressed to get "maximum coverage," with the duchess allegedly changing outfits multiple times in a single day.

"The whole three day-trip was orchestrated to mimic a royal tour, with security, the media roped off, the vacuous meetings organized with dignitaries to exchange platitudes and offer the royal encouragement as everyone posed for the cameras or soulfully stared at a wreath for the 9/11 dead and hugged students at a poor school," Bolt claimed.

Prince Harry and Markle arrived in New York City on Sept. 22, days before their planned appearance at the Global Citizen Live concert in Central Park to promote vaccine equity.

During their three-day stay in the Big Apple, Prince Harry and Markle toured the observatory on floors 100 and 102 of the One World Trade Center with New York Gov. Kathy Hochul and city Mayor Bill de Blasio and visited the 9/11 Memorial.

They also later met with students at a Harlem elementary school and the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, with whom they discussed COVID-19, racial justice and mental health.

Bolt also questioned the Sussexes' "important" discussion with the ambassador.

"It seems to me what the ambassador really meant was they all felt important sitting there. Self-important," the host claimed, adding, "This tour was full of not just empty gestures but such obvious hypocrisy."

Prince Harry and Markle were accompanied by their own videographer and photographer to document their trip, Page Six previously reported, citing unnamed sources. The outlet also noted that the duke appeared to be sporting a mic during their visit to Harlem soul food eatery Melba.

Prince Harry and Markle's Big Apple tour was allegedly also slammed in British media, Insider noted. However, an unnamed friend of Markle's told royal correspondent Omid Scobie for Harper's Bazaar that the couple was not bothered by the British tabloids' opinion of them.

"The tabloids will do as the tabloids do," the pal said. "Only difference now is that they really don’t pay attention to it. It doesn’t penetrate their world."

Pricne Harry and Meghan Markle NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 23: Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex visit One World Observatory at One World Observatory on September 23, 2021 in New York City. Photo: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images