'I believe our Government is at rock bottom': Prince Harry launches unprecedented political attack during hacking trial

6 June 2023, 11:12 | Updated: 6 June 2023, 13:02

Prince Harry arrives at the High Court
Prince Harry arrives at the High Court. Picture: Alamy
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

Prince Harry has launched a scathing double attack on the government and the press, claiming in his witness statement that both are at "rock bottom".

Speaking in his witness statement, the Duke of Sussex said: "On a national level as, at the moment, our country is judged globally by the state of our press and our government – both of which I believe are at rock bottom.

"Democracy fails when your press fails to scrutinise and hold the government accountable, and instead choose to get into bed with them so they can ensure the status quo.

"I may not have a role within the Institution but, as a member of the British Royal family, and as a soldier upholding important values, I feel there’s a responsibility to expose this criminal activity in the name of public interest.

"The country and the British public deserve to know the depths of what was actually happening then, and indeed now. We will be better off for it."

Court artist sketches Duke of Sussex giving evidence at High Court

In his witness statement, which is 55 pages long, Harry also says the press wants to break up his marriage with Meghan Markle.

"Whenever I got into a relationship, they were very keen to report the details but would then, very quickly, seek to try and break it up by putting as much strain on it and creating as much distrust as humanly possible," he said.

"This twisted objective is still pursued to this day even though I’m now married.

"I simply don’t understand (and never have) how the inner, private details of my relationships ... could have anything to do with the well-being of society or the running of the country and therefore be in the public interest."

Prince Harry court sketch
Prince Harry court sketch. Picture: PA

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Harry arrived outside the Rolls Building in central London at 9.36am in a black Range Rover, wearing a black suit.

He walked into the building without answering reporters' questions before passing security checks inside.

The duke's case against Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN) started on Monday, when his Barrister David Sherborne claimed he was subjected to unlawful information-gathering activity.

Mr Sherborne alleged that this started "right from when he was a young boy at school" into adulthood, adding: "Nothing was sacrosanct or out of bounds."