Boris Johnson says he will not be waiting up to watch Sussexes' interview

Harry Yorke
·2-min read
Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson has suggested he would not wait up to watch the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s interview, as he skirted around questions on the Royal Family.

Asked about the interview with Oprah Winfrey, which airs on Sunday evening, the Prime Minister said he was “unlikely” to watch it and was instead “focusing on the vaccine rollout and economic recovery.

Speaking during a visit to a vaccination centre in north London, he told reporters: "Of course I'm interested in all sorts of stuff in the news around the world.

“It’s quite late our time so I’ll probably miss it and I’ll be focussing, as I’m sure you would expect and the people of the country would expect, I’m focusing on rolling out the vaccine.”

Pushed on whether he would record the interview, he added: "I think it unlikely. We are focusing on the vaccine rollout and economic recovery."

It follows reports over the weekend that the Queen will also not watch the two-hour interview, which airs on Sunday evening on CBS in the US. ITV will also broadcast the programme at 9pm on Monday.

The Queen is expected to step up her official engagements in the coming days as Buckingham Palace seeks to move beyond the inevitable controversy that the Duke and Duchess are expected to generate.

Following Mr Johnson’s diplomatic response, Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary, was similarly evasive when asked about the interview, telling Times Radio: “I will be in the House of Commons, so I will probably be paying attention to the debate in the House of Commons. Probably won’t have time to.”

However, when asked about the Government’s refusal to be drawn into the row, Mr Williamson was less guarded, telling Times Radio: “The whole nation stands up for the Queen.

“The whole nation holds the Queen in the absolute highest regard. But as you well know the Government doesn’t comment on matters in the Royal Family and that’s a long established convention and one we’ll continue to uphold.”

Pressed on whether he felt some sympathy for the Queen, he continued: The whole nation is looking forward, very much, to her jubilee that's so rapidly heading our way.

“And this will be a real, important moment for the whole nation, to come out in terms of celebrating an amazing reign that the Queen has had.”