Weeks after officially leaving their roles as senior royals, Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, have told British tabloids that they will have "zero engagement" with the newspapers.
This latest sign of a breakdown in relations with a swath of the media came in a letter to the editors of The Sun, Daily Mail, Daily Express and Daily Mirror.
"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have watched people they know — as well as complete strangers — have their lives completely pulled apart for no good reason, other than the fact that salacious gossip boosts advertising revenue," the letter said, according to a version sent to NBC News Monday.
"With that said, please note that The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will not be engaging with your outlet. There will be no corroboration and zero engagement," the statement added.
The new arrangements under this policy would mean the tabloids would not be given access to the duke and duchess’ photographs or updates that will be shared with other news outlets from the couple’s media team. It is unclear if the tabloids will also be banned from media events the couple organize.
This policy comes after years of tabloid attention surrounding the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and the British royals in general. Prince Harry last year spoke out against the "ruthless campaign" the British press have waged against his new wife. Sharing the couple’s struggles with tabloids in that statement Harry said “I have been a silent witness to her private suffering for too long.”
It wasn’t always like this. The couple’s depiction in the press soured quickly following their 2018 wedding.
After hitting a high before and soon after the couple’s wedding in May 2018, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have had an increasingly fraught relationship with the media. Later this week Meghan's legal case against one of the papers will be heard at London's High Court.
The couple's decision was not a blanket policy for all media, the statement added, nor was it personal to an individual journalist.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex believe that a free press is a cornerstone to any democracy,” according to the statement. “Media have every right to report on and indeed have an opinion on The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, good or bad. But it can’t be based on a lie.”
Reuters contributed to this report.