Prince Harry gives nod to brother William despite rift as he remembers mum Princess Diana for 'living with compassion'

PRINCE Harry has today given a nod to William despite the brothers' rift as he praised his mum for living "authentically with purpose".

The Duke of Sussex has flown to the UK for a special event to mark what would have been Princess Diana's 60th birthday – the second time he has returned home after quitting the Royal Family.

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Prince Harry was filmed speaking about The Diana Award, which honours young people who work to improve the lives of others.

The award is a prestigious accolade aimed at young people aged between nine and 25 for their social action or humanitarian work, and it's named after Diana.

It's unclear where the video was filmed as Harry has been self-isolating at Frogmore Cottage since landing at Heathrow last week.

In the video message, a beaming Harry pays tribute to young people living compassionately, saying: "Later this week my brother and I are recognising what would have been our mum's 60th birthday, and she will be so proud of you all for living an authentic life, with purpose and with compassion for others."

William and Harry will stand side-by-side on Thursday for the service to mark Diana's 60th birthday.

The nod to William comes despite claims the relationship between the royal brothers has worsened after Harry and Meghan unleashed a string of bombshell claims about the Royal Family.

The couple told Oprah they had faced racism within the Firm and said that Meghan had not been given support as she struggled with her mental health.

In the video, Prince Harry also referred to his wife, Meghan Markle, who remains in the US with their children while he visits the UK to help unveil his mum's statue at Kensington Palace on July 1 with William.

He continues: "Our mum believed that young people have the power to change the world.

"She believed in your strength, because she saw it day and day out. And in the faces of young people exactly like you she witnessed a boundless enthusiasm and passion.

"And I too see those same values shine through.

"As it has done for 21 years now, the Diana Award carries her legacy forward by putting young people at the centre of our future. This has never been more important.

"And Meg and I fundamentally believe that our world is at the cusp of change, real change for the good of all.

"But the question before us is what that change will look like.

"The Covid-19 crisis exposed severe inequities and imbalances around the world.

"We saw the disproportionate effect of this pandemic on communities of colour, on women, on under-served communities and on less wealthy countries.

"We've seen – and unless we take swift action – we will continue to see a disparity in our humanitarian and moral obligation to vaccinate the world."

Prince Harry adds in the footage: "There is great need for young leadership, and there's no greater time to be a young leader.

"I believe in you, we believe in you, and that belief in your own ability to change the world, in doing the right thing, is what makes you a force to be reckoned with.

"So to all the Diana 2021 recipients thank you for inspiring us with your brilliance, your determination, and your compassion.

"Your actions hold the potential to lead a life-changing impact.

"You are putting the 'dos' behind the 'says', and this is the personification of our mother's legacy.

"To everyone else watching, I'm hopeful that today's award recipients have inspired you to be part of a future where humanity is cherished, where our communities are supported and uplifted and where we are considerate and compassionate to each other, both online and off.

"Never be afraid to do what's right, stand up for what you believe in, and trust that when you've lived by truth and by service to others, people will see that."

In the video, shared on social media today, the royal is introduced by Tessy Ojo who announces: "One of our biggest supporters wanted to be part of today's celebrations.

"Like us, he truly believes that young people like you have the power to change the world.

"And so it gives me great pleasure to welcome him right now, the Duke of Sussex."

He was speaking ahead of this week's unveiling in London of the statue commemorating his mum, which William and Harry commissioned four years ago, to celebrate Diana's life.

For most of their lives, the royal brothers have been close, united by the shared trauma of losing their mother who died aged 36 in a 1997 Paris car crash when William was 15 and Harry 12.

But since Harry's 2018 wedding to his American actress wife Meghan, relations between them have soured and an explosive interview that the couple gave chat show host Oprah Winfrey in March marked a new low.

In it, Harry, now 36, criticised his father Charles and said William, 39, and the family were trapped, while the couple accused one unnamed royal of making a racist remark.

Biographer Robert Lacey said that in April the brothers quarrelled in the immediate aftermath of the funeral of Prince Philip, their grandmother's husband of more than 70 years, and there was no sign of any improvement.

"The conflict between Diana's two bitterly divided sons does not seem likely to end any time soon," he wrote in the Daily Mail, adding that friends and family were trying to forge a reconciliation.

"Unless one of them is going to say sorry, and I think that probably has to be Harry, I can't see this relationship at the moment mending itself," royal commentator Penny Junor said.

"My understanding is the boys are not speaking to one other, certainly not in the way brothers normally speak," she told Reuters.

Harry told Winfrey that their relationship was "space at the moment", but hoped time would heal it.

"I love William to bits, he's my brother, we've been through hell together and we have a shared experience. But we're on different paths," he said.

Thursday's statue unveiling in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace where Diana lived, and which is now home to William and his family, will be a small event with the princes, Diana's close family and the sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley among the few attending.

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