michelleobama-interview

Michelle Obama calls for Meghan Markle's racism allegations to be 'teachable moment'

The former First Lady has known Prince Harry for over 10 years

Rebecca Lewis

Michelle Obama has admitted it "wasn't a complete surprise" to hear Meghan Markle raise the issues of race.

The former First Lady, who has known Prince Harry for over ten years, spoke on the Today show and shared her thoughts on the Oprah Winfrey interview.

"Race isn't a new construct for people of colour so it wasn't a complete surprise to hear her feelings, and to have them articulated," said Michelle.

"But the thing I hope for, the thing I think about, is that this is first and foremost a family and I pray for forgiveness and healing, so they can use this as a teachable moment for us all."

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Hello! Insider: Harry and Meghan's Oprah Interview

Michelle also spoke about the pressures of being a public servant, adding that "most people don't understand it, nor should they."

"The thing I always keep in mind is that it's not about us in public service, it's about the people we serve, I try to push the light back out and focus it on the people we try to serve."

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Meghan had alleged there were conversations among the royal family about "how dark" her child's skin would be; Meghan is biracial.

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Harry and Meghan's interview caused shockwaves

Buckingham Palace released a statement last Tuesday after the programme aired on CBS in the US on 7 March.

The statement on behalf of the Queen read: "The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.

"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."

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Michelle has known Harry for ten years

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are now living in Montecito, Santa Barbara with their one-year-old son Archie after stepping back from royal duties in March 2020.

Prince William later addressed allegations of racism within the royal family.

During a public appearance with wife Kate at a school in east London, William told a reporter: "We're very much not a racist family."

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