How did the North American press cover Harry and Meghan’s decision to step away?

The announcement that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have walked away from the monarchy has made front pages across the Atlantic – where they intend to spend much of their time.

“The Great British Break Off” reads the headline of the New York Post in the US, who add Harry and Meghan “will pay back 3 million dollars in Megxit deal”.

It was announced on Saturday the Sussexes will repay the taxpayers’ millions spent on their Berkshire home, no longer use HRH and stop carrying out royal duties from the spring – a result “gracefully crafted” by the Queen according to the New York Post’s celebrity gossip site Page Six.

The title’s Canadian comment writer Isabel Vincent said the Queen had shown she “wasn’t going to put up with any more nonsense” from the couple who “have behaved like two spoiled brats”.

She added that Buckingham Palace did not comment on who would be paying for Harry and Meghan’s security while they stay in Canada, writing: “I say let these new commoners pay the tab.”

Canadian outlet the Globe and Mail said the couple’s security costs are estimated at £600,000 annually. It noted comments from the nation’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau this week who said security costs were “part of the reflection that needs to be had and there are discussions going on”.

By contrast to its New York namesake, the Washington Post’s take reads: “The couple win their freedom from a palace-centric life of duty serving the queen as ‘senior working royals,’ which they found suffocating — especially the intense, often harsh media coverage.”

Trooping the Colour
Trooping the Colour

The New York Times’ Mark Landler also pointed to “a toxic relationship with Britain’s tabloids” as well as the American links with the “unusual deal”.

“However civil, the agreement codifies one of the most dramatic ruptures within the British royal family since King Edward VIII abdicated the throne in 1936 to marry an American woman, Wallis Simpson,” wrote Mr Landler.

He described Meghan as “a 38-year-old American actress with a mixed-race background who brought a breath of fresh air into one of the country’s most revered but hidebound institutions”.

The Wall Street Journal described the decision for Harry and Meghan to cease royal duties as a watershed moment for the royal family “which has long considered public service its foremost duty”.