Harry's feud with William 'pre dates Meghan Markle and originated with a row about conserving elephants in Africa'

3 February 2024, 07:05

Harry and William's row is said to pre-date the relationship with Meghan
Harry and William's row is said to pre-date the relationship with Meghan. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

The feud between Prince Harry and Prince William pre-dates his relationship with Meghan and took off during a row about conservation.

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The strain on their relationship began over a difference in how to intervene to save wildlife, palace insiders say.

Both are passionate about conservation but, according to sources, they got into a row about how to carry it out and who was responsible for what.

"They are both very passionate about saving protected species but didn’t always share the same view about how to run projects in Africa," a source told The Times.

"William believes you should focus on community-led schemes where local people over time feel empowered to protect the land. Harry, on the other hand, was more interventionist.

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"He felt that you need a more hands-on approach to ensure wildlife habitats were securely protected to enact change quickly."

Harry's method would need lots of money from donors and has caused clashes with communities over grazing and herding routes.

Harry and William had a row over their work in Africa
Harry and William had a row over their work in Africa. Picture: Alamy

He has written about how fences need to be used to separate people and animals.

He relocated 500 elephants in Malawi in 2017, one of the biggest efforts of its kind.

But the duke previously wrote about how, according to him, William viewed the animals as in his sphere of influence.

Harry wrote in his memoir Spare how the brothers almost "came to blows" in front of their friends, and when they asked about their work in Africa, William is alleged to have said: "Because rhinos, elephants, that's mine!"

Their has been at rock-bottom for years, with Harry standing down as a full-time royal and moving to the US before taking a string of shots in Spare.

Harry is reportedly working on a new Netflix documentary about his conservation work in Africa.

Meanwhile, it has emerged that rangers paid by African Parks, which he serves as president of the board of directors, have been accused of raping and beating indigenous people.

The charity employs more than 1,000 people in 22 national parks across 12 countries in Africa. The abuse is alleged to have taken place in the Republic of the Congo.

"When the duke became aware of these serious allegations, he immediately escalated them to the CEO and chairman of the board of African Parks, the appropriate people to handle next steps," a spokesperson said.