Harry and Meghan appeal for understanding amid reports her father may skip wedding

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have appealed for "understanding and respect" to be given to  the American actress' father amid speculation he has pulled out of the royal wedding.

Thomas Markle has been caught up in controversy after he allegedly staged paparazzi photographs of himself in the run-up to the ceremony being held at Windsor Castle this Saturday.

Speculation that Mr Markle will not walk his daughter down the aisle began after a celebrity website claimed he would not attend, following the fallout from the pictures.

A Kensington Palace spokesman said:  "This is a deeply personal moment for Ms Markle in the days before her wedding.

Royal fans gathering outside Windsor Castle ahead of the wedding (Steve Parsons/PA)
Royal fans gathering outside Windsor Castle ahead of the wedding (Steve Parsons/PA)

"She and Prince Harry ask again for understanding and respect to be extended to Mr Markle in this difficult situation."

Kensington Palace would not comment further.

Ms Markle's half-sister Samantha Markle attempted to shoulder some of the blame when she earlier tweeted it was her idea for Mr Markle to pose for what she described as "positive photos" in a bid to combat his "bad" portrayal in the press, but stated it was not done for money.

The Mail On Sunday newspaper reported the story at the weekend claiming the images were staged and published CCTV footage stills of the US actress' father in the internet cafe with a photographer.

The pictures were published earlier this month in a number of newspapers and news websites showing Mr Markle in a series of royal wedding related activities, apparently unaware he was being snapped.

Mr Markle was pictured being measured for what was thought to be his wedding suit, looking at screen pictures of Ms Markle and Harry while in an internet cafe, and reading a picture book about Britain while having a coffee.

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