Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will make his taxpayers pick up the mammoth tab for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s round-the-clock protection by a team of Mounties while they live there, a report said Monday.
Trudeau has “privately assured” Queen Elizabeth II that Harry, Meghan and baby Archie’s safety “will not be jeopardized” in his country, which is part of the British Commonwealth, according to the Evening Standard.
The family will be protected by the same specialist team of Royal Canadian Mounted Police that currently guards the governor general, who represents the Queen in Canada, the paper said.
Security — and its huge cost, given the Sussexes’ desire to be “financially independent” — is one of the issues understood to be central to ongoing discussions within the royal household after “constructive discussions” at the historic summit at Sandringham Monday.
As a former British Army officer who has served in Afghanistan — and the current captain general of the Royal Marines — Harry is deemed a particularly high-level risk following previous death threats.
Canadian security will be provided even if the Sussexes continue to get guarded by British royal protection officers from Scotland Yard, the report says. UK police bosses are currently debating with government officials as to whether that protection will continue, the report says.
Trudeau, 48, has agreed that his taxpayers will foot the bill — sparking outrage among some as the costs are expected to soar to more than $1.3 million, the paper says.
“I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect us to pay for everything the way we do for a royal visit,” Aaron Wudrick, director of the Canadian Taxpayers’ Federation, told the Standard.
“If they’re going to make Canada a second home, a good step in the right direction would be to pay for at least part of it, and not rely on taxpayers to fund their entire lifestyle.”
Meghan is already in Canada with baby Archie, returning after just a few days in the UK following their six-week stay over the holidays.