Al Qaeda threatened to kill Prince Harry: court documents

 February 29, 2024

Al Qaeda threatened to assassinate Prince Harry after he opened up about killing Taliban fighters in his controversial tell-all memoir, according to court documents.

The threats were mentioned in Harry's court battle over his taxpayer-funded security in the United Kingdom, where he has not lived since quitting royal duties in 2020.

A court ruled Wednesday that the government had not erred when it downgraded his protection.

Prince Harry targeted by Al Qaeda

Harry complained that he was being treated "less favorably," but the High Court found there was no "unlawfulness" in the government's decision to handle Harry's security on a case-by-case basis.

The ruling mentioned an alleged threat from Al Qaeda in 2023, following the release of Harry's best-selling book Spare. 

"In light of various matters, including that he was the son of King Charles III, a brother of the Prince of Wales, and that Al Qaeda had recently called for the claimant to be killed, the Director of European Security said that the claimant [redacted text]," court documents said.

Harry's controversial statements

Harry stirred controversy with his comments about serving in Afghanistan in Spare, his controversial 2023 memoir.

The Duke of Sussex said he was desensitized to killing Taliban fighters whom he had come to think of as "chess pieces," adding he personally had 25 kills.

“In the heat and fog of combat, I didn’t think of those 25 as people. I’d been trained to ‘other-ise’ them,” he wrote.

The comments led to outrage in Afghanistan and prompted a furious statement from the Taliban, which reclaimed control of the war-torn country in 2021.

Absentee prince angers taxpayers

Harry has visited the United Kingdom only rarely since leaving royal duties behind with his wife Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex.

The prince remains estranged from the royal family, and he was criticized for a brief whirlwind trip to see his cancer-stricken father, King Charles, in February.

Harry, who lives in America full-time, has said security risks prevent him from freely visiting his native country, but critics say his controversial comments, particularly about the Taliban, are partially to blame.

In the meantime, he has vowed to appeal the court's decision on his security.

"The Duke of Sussex hopes he will obtain justice from the Court of Appeal, and makes no further comment while the case is ongoing," he said.

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