Just moments after Prince Andrew confirmed he was stepping down from his royal duties, his eldest daughter Princess Beatrice was pictured - in photos obtained by The Sun - celebrating her fiancé Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi's birthday in London. Trying to keep a low-profile, the 31-year-old appeared to be in great spirits as she headed to Annabel's members club with her beau. Meanwhile, her younger sister, Princess Eugenie, was also spotted out and about, leaving the Elephant Family Charity Dinner alone.
Princess Beatrice celebrated her fiance's birthday on Wednesday (pictured previously)
Earlier on, their father confirmed he would "step back from public duties for the foreseeable future" amid criticism over his relationship with disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein. In a statement released by Buckingham Palace, the Duke of York said: "It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family's work and the valuable work going on in the many organisations and charities that I am proud to support. Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission."
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He added: "I continue to unequivocally regret my ill-judged association with Jeffrey Epstein. His suicide has left many unanswered questions, particularly for his victims, and I deeply sympathise with everyone who has been affected and wants some form of closure. I can only hope that, in time, they will be able to rebuild their lives. Of course, I am willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required." A royal source has since confirmed to HELLO! that the Queen had been fully consulted and is "supportive" of the Duke's decision.
The Duke of York is now taking a step back from royal duties
On Saturday, Prince Andrew gave an interview with BBC Newsnight's Emily Maitlis. The 59-year-old spoke about his links with the convicted sex offender, and "categorically" denied having any sexual contact with American woman Virginia Giuffre, one of Jeffrey's accusers, who was aged 17 at the time. The royal told Emily: "It didn't happen. I can absolutely categorically tell you it never happened. I have no recollection of ever meeting this lady, none whatsoever."
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