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Daily Record
Charlotte Tutton & Siobhan Macdonald

GMB's Susanna Reid defends Harry as Rob Rinder accuses prince of 'monetising' Diana

Susanna Reid and Robert Rinder were at loggerheads on Tuesday's instalment of Good Morning Britain as the pair discussed Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's new Netflix series.

The TV judge slammed the Duke and Duchess of Sussex as they are set to be honoured with The Ripple of Hope Award from the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights foundation for their "stand against structural racism".

Robert, 44, said there were other activists who are more deserving of the award than the royal couple. He also wasn't pleased to see clips unrelated to the couple in the Netflix trailer that appeared to display scenes of "media intrusion".

However, Susanna didn't quite agree with Robert's points and wanted to "play Devil's Advocate" to challenge him, reports the Mirror.

Susanna suggested the couple could have been giving examples of intrusion by photographers - and not necessarily saying it was intrusion they themselves had suffered.

It became clear the panel had differing opinions as GMB guests Andrew Pierce and Kevin Maguire also waded into the disagreement.

Susanna and Rob fiercely debated the issue on GMB (ITV)

Susanna stepped in as they discussed the use of irrelevant "evidence" of intrusion for a series that is meant to be "their truth".

She said: "I'm gonna step in and play Devil's Advocate. Is the point not that they’re showing what press intrusion is like for a whole number of people and not just them?"

Andrew said: "No, they are trying to show Meghan Markle was subjected to the same totally unacceptable level of media intrusion as the late Princess of Wales, Harry's mother.

"He is monetising his mother in all of this by the way. The evidence is simply not there because since the death of Diana the rules and regulations and all sorts restrictions [have changed]. She talks about telling her truth. There are untruths already and these are just in the trailers."

Rob then said to Susanna: "Why are you playing Devil's Advocate, don't, you know. I'm sorry there are laws… it kills me to agree with you on this [Andrew] but the reality is outside this little media bubble and living in the real world, laws have evolved, privacy.

"There's a human right act, like it or not, out there which protects privacy and controls and governs what the media can do. There is a difference between violent intrusion and the type of media coverage that you just don't like and that’s profoundly different."

Susanna interjected: "Okay, what do you define as violent intrusion? If somebody's in a car being followed by somebody they know is trying to take their picture, that might not be in your words violent intrusion."

As Rob suggested it couldn’t happen in the UK, Susanna hit back: "Sorry, I beg to differ. I have been in a car and I know there has been a photographer in a car that has been following me. I understand there is a remedy after the effect but what I am saying is, that didn't stop the fact it happened at the time."

The Duchess is seen sobbing in the explosive trailer (Netflix)

Kevin said he understood why Harry was protective towards his wife after his mother's death, but said using evidence that had nothing to do with them wasn't right, given the series is meant to be their truth.

He said: "If this isn’t accurate and they are getting paid a shedload for Netflix, why believe other things?"

Susanna said: "I get your point but the point I'm trying to make is if you are involved in a news story, and I'm not just talking about celebrities, photographers will be outside your house and people will say they’re royals, what do you expect."

As Robert went to interrupt Susanna quipped: "Sorry can I just finish my point.

"A lot of people watching don't realise it can be a horrible experience. If you have a photographer in a car outside your house and you don't know they are there, it's not a very nice experience and I just watch Harry and Megan and that is times a billion, so I can see the point they're trying to make, which is it's not very nice to be under this scrutiny relentlessly and look what happened to his mum."

Robert then said of media privacy: "There are ways you can choose to live your life in a private fashion… these are people who deliberately placed themselves in the public sphere.

"Now whatever your background, as soon as you monetise that you’re not fair game, I wanna be clear on that, and neither is it reasonable but it seems to me that you can't then go around complaining when people are unkind to you."

Rob then brought up the award won by the couple, saying: "The thing that strikes me, just have a bit of humility… you think of people who have spent their lives campaigning for human rights.

"The idea that you would go and collect this award for taking lots of money to gripe at your family, and in my view not do anything really meaningful to expose structural racism but rather instead damage an institution.

"Surely what you would do would be to have the profound and clear and honest humility as a human being, to know there are people out there you should accept the award on their behalf bearing in mind the real human rights work that they do."

Susanna told him: "Sorry there are plenty of people who will support entirely the work Harry and Meghan, Meghan in particular, have done."

She agreed that Meghan was "under fire " and "under siege from the media", Robert called her out, saying: "Sorry, you think Meghan was under siege in the same way [as Diana]... do you actually think that?"

Susanna said back: "Yes I actually do think she was under siege, not in the same way as Princess Diana and not to the same level, but as Harry said in the trailer, 'I was worried about what would happen to Meghan and history repeating itself', I can entirely sympathise with that."

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am on STV.

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