Endgame back on sale in Netherlands with 'hundreds' of changes made - and alleged race row royals' names removed

10 December 2023, 12:04 | Updated: 10 December 2023, 12:16

Endgame has been re-released in the Netherlands after Omid Scobie's book identified two royals
Endgame has been re-released in the Netherlands after Omid Scobie's book identified two royals. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

The new edition of Omid Scobie's Endgame has been released in the Netherlands with "hundreds of changes" made to the text.

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Thousands of copies had to be pulled from the shelves after it emerged two royals were identified as those alleged to have enquired about what Archie's skin colour would be.

Those references have been removed - but Rick Evers, the Dutch journalist who reported on the royals' identities being published, now says the phrasing used about them is more respectful.

And the language on William - who is portrayed a power-hungry and in a sort of spat with the King - is less accusatory.

Mr Evers said that "strict British laws" are blamed for the book not naming the royals.

And in other passages, new sources have been added, and Camilla is entitled "Queen Consort" instead of "Queen", while Kate is no longer called Catherine.

One part drops the use of "I" for a reference to ABC News, and a section involving Mr Scobie and William, who is driving a vehicle, is altered to say it was a "moving car that I almost ran into", with the prince giving him a "neutral look" after the author said sorry.

Read more: Queen wanted Harry to keep security despite prince's claim he was 'forced' to leave UK after it was downgraded

Omid Scobie's book has caused a storm
Omid Scobie's book has caused a storm. Picture: Alamy

Endgame's publication had already caused a stir before its release, as a series of claims against the royals emerged in the press.

Among them are claims that Harry was kept in the dark as he travelled to see the dying Queen Elizabeth.

But it is the race row that has attracted the most attention.

The publication of their names in the Dutch version led to the King consulting with his advisers, and legal action was said to be on the table.

The Palace has not formally responded and royals have ignored the drama in their public appearances.

Mr Scobie, who has been viewed as sympathetic to Harry and Meghan, has said the identities emerged in a letter from Meghan to the King about the skin colour allegations.

Read more: Dutch publishers of Endgame slam author Omid Scobie for claim they are to blame for naming 'royal racists'

But that letter is under lock and key, leaving the Palace to believe it was not leaked from them.

Meghan has said she did not tell him the identities.

And it has caused a row between Mr Scobie and the Dutch publisher.

He said translators in the Netherlands were sent an "early" manuscript that was never updated with the final version that was checked over by lawyers.

Writing in the I, he said: "The 403 pages that I had carefully written, edited, and signed off to the printers made it very clear that any names would not be revealed due to legal reasons."

He explained: "To be clear, the only publisher I worked directly with was the one covering the US and UK.

"I spent almost two months with independent British barristers and in-house legal counsel to ensure that every detail in the finished book was legally watertight."

Endgame has been republished in the Netherlands
Endgame has been republished in the Netherlands. Picture: Alamy

He said an "early and uncleared text was provided to the Dutch publisher in order for them to start work on the translation, with the understanding that their translation would be updated to reflect the final version of the book I officially submitted".

He went on to say: "False reports suggested that this was all part of some elaborate PR campaign (an offensive and ridiculous claim, especially given that the book had already been on the front pages for several days before this news had broken)."

But Dutch publisher Xander Uitgevers denied his claim categorically.

"Omid Scobie's explanation in his column in iNews about the Dutch editorial process of the Dutch edition of Endgame is factually incorrect and we do not recognize ourselves in his representation of the events," they said.

"Xander Uitgevers is not allowed to say anything about the content, we therefore refer to the agent UTA."