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Omid Scobie denies ‘naming royal racist’ in Dutch Endgame translation as sales halted in Netherlands

Omid Scobie has denied naming the alleged “royal racist” in Endgame after an “error” in the Dutch version of his bombshell new book put a name to Meghan Markle’s allegations.

The royal reporter and author said that a “translation error” had led to a name featuring in the passage of the book, which had been shared with journalists in the Netherlands.

Appearing on Dutch chat show RTL Boulevard, he said: “The book is in several languages, and unfortunately I do not speak Dutch. But if there are translation errors, I’m sure the publishers will have it under control.

“I wrote and edited the English version,” he added. “There’s never been no version that I’ve produced that has names in it.”

Xander, the publishers of the Dutch version of Endgame, said that sales of the book were on hold “temporarily” over what it called an “error”. “[We are] temporarily withdrawing the book by Omid Scobie from sale,” their statement read. “An error occurred in the Dutch translation and is currently being rectified.”

The claims relate to a 2021 Oprah Winfrey interview in which Meghan Markle alleged that there were “concerns and conversations” about how dark her and Prince Harry’s son’s skin might be when she was pregnant.

The topic is raised in Endgame, the shocking new book from author Scobie released on Tuesday (28 November). You can read The Independent’s review of the book here.

‘Endgame’ hit shelves on Tuesday (Calder Publicity/HarperCollins)
‘Endgame’ hit shelves on Tuesday (Calder Publicity/HarperCollins)

In the book, Scobie doesn’t name the person, which he says is due to libel laws, but he does claim that the remarks were echoed by another person, also in the royal household.

However, The Daily Mail reported that the person’s identity appeared to have been revealed in the Dutch-language version of the book released to reviewers in the Netherlands.

The copy reads: “But in those private letters [the identity] was confirmed” before naming the person.

As a result, Endgame was reportedly pulled in the Netherlands. This was confirmed by publishers Xander, who saidit received a last-minute request from the US to halt sales until “further instructions”.

A spokesperson for the publisher originally told the publication that they couldn’t discuss the details, but said: “We have, however, received a request to put the title on hold and that is what we have done.”

The Independent has contacted Buckingham Palace for comment.

After Meghan and Harry’s interview with Winfrey was made public, Buckingham Palace released a statement on behalf of the late Queen Elizabeth II.

Noting that “recollections may vary” with regards to the racism allegations put forward by Meghan, they said: “The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.”

Meghan made the allegations in a 2021 interview with Oprah Winfrey (PA Wire)
Meghan made the allegations in a 2021 interview with Oprah Winfrey (PA Wire)

“The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much-loved family members.”

In Endgame, Scobie claims that Charles and Meghan discussed the issue in private letters that were exchanged in the aftermath of the interview, with Charles said to have suggested Meghan should also share her feelings with Kate and William.

However, Scobie alleges that neither Meghan nor Harry have heard from the now-Prince and Princess of Wales regarding the race row. An unnamed source close to the family said that “the silence has caused a lot of confusion and upset”.

Earlier this year, it was reported that Meghan did write to Charles after the interview, penning a letter expressing her concerns about an unconscious bias within the royal family.

Meghan’s letter was reportedly written in response to correspondence from Charles, who expressed his sadness over the divide within the royal family. The king also expressed his disappointment at the high-profile and serious nature of the allegation.

Both Charles and Meghan acknowledged that the alleged remark about Archie’s skin colour was not made with malice. Meghan thanked the king for his letter and clarified that she was not accusing the royal family of racism but rather raising concerns about an unconscious bias.