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King Willem-Alexander jokes about Princess Kate's Photoshop controversy

The Princess of Wales released an edited image on Mother's Day

Split image of King Willem-Alexander and Kate Middleton
Matthew Moore
Online News Writer & Diversity and Inclusion Lead
14 March 2024
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King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands has seemingly joked about the controversy around the Princess of Wales' Mother's Day photo which was pulled by photo agencies for being edited.

As he met with members of the public on Wednesday during a royal engagement, the Dutch monarch was asked about a photo of his own family by a group of children. In response, the 56-year-old joked: "Really? In any case I didn't Photoshop it!" See the moment in the clip below…

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On Mother's Day, Kensington Palace released the first image of the Princess of Wales since she underwent abdominal surgery in January. However, it soon emerged that parts of the image had been digitally altered.

The alterations led to several photo agencies pulling the image, with a spokesperson for PA saying: "Like other news agencies, PA Media issued the handout image provided by Kensington Palace of the Princess of Wales and her children in good faith yesterday.

Kate shared a photo of herself with her three children on Sunday, to mark Mother's Day in the UK © Kensington Palace
Kate's image was pulled after alterations were spotted

"We became aware of concerns about the image and we carried a report about it last night, and made clear that we were seeking urgent clarification about the image from Kensington Palace. In the absence of that clarification, we are killing the image from our picture service."

Questions around the image became so much that Kate took the rare step of making a public apology, saying: "Like many amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing. I wanted to express my apologies for any confusion the family photograph we shared yesterday caused. I hope everyone celebrating had a very happy Mother's Day. C."

Prince William and Kate Middleton in the back of a car© Bruce Bennett
The Princess has only been glimpsed since her surgery

The Princess later made her first outing since her surgery, as she was pictured in a car alongside her husband, Prince William, as the Prince of Wales headed to the Commonwealth Day service. The mum-of-three didn't join her husband, as she was instead on a private engagement.

Kate isn't expected to be back to full-time work until after the Easter break. Easter Sunday falls on 31 March when the royals traditionally attend church in Windsor.

Kate Middleton close up© Getty
The royal underwent abdominal surgery

It's not known at this stage whether Kate will join the family for the service or whether she will resume public engagements after the children's school holidays.

On 17 January, it was confirmed by Kensington Palace that Kate had been admitted to the private London Clinic for planned abdominal surgery.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visits the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre Stanford Hall on February 11, 2020 in Loughborough© Getty
Kate is set to return to the spotlight following Easter

The palace released a lengthy statement, which added: "The Princess of Wales appreciates the interest this statement will generate. She hopes that the public will understand her desire to maintain as much normality for her children as possible; and her wish that her personal medical information remains private. "Kensington Palace will, therefore, only provide updates on Her Royal Highness' progress when there is significant new information to share.

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"The Princess of Wales wishes to apologise to all those concerned for the fact that she has to postpone her upcoming engagements. She looks forward to reinstating as many as possible, as soon as possible."

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