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Prince Harry back in U.K. to be with his father following King Charles' cancer diagnosis

Prince Harry to visit King Charles in U.K.
Prince Harry to visit U.K. amid King Charles' cancer diagnosis 05:24

Prince Harry returned from Los Angeles to the U.K. on Tuesday to see his father, a day after Buckingham Palace announced that King Charles III had been diagnosed with cancer and was receiving treatment. The prince was seen being driven in a black SUV from London's Heathrow Airport to his father's Clarence House residence in central London. His wife Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, was not seen with him.

Harry spoke with his father about the cancer diagnosis before leaving the U.S., Buckingham Palace said. The king personally informed both of his sons, Harry and William, the Prince of Wales, and his siblings, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, about his health.

What we know about King Charles' health

Buckingham Palace did not provide specifics on Charles' diagnosis in Monday's announcement. He was treated last month for an enlarged prostate, but the palace said at the time that it was not cancerous.

"During The King's recent hospital procedure for benign prostate enlargement, a separate issue of concern was noted," Buckingham Palace said. "Subsequent diagnostic tests have identified a form of cancer."

Charles has started treatments. Palace officials did not specify what type of treatment the monarch is undergoing. 

What we know about King Charles' cancer diagnosis 01:07

The relationship between King Charles and Prince Harry 

Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, stepped back from his royal duties in 2020. At the time, his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, was the reigning monarch. Charles became king immediately upon the death of his mother in September 2022, and his coronation was held in May of the following year. 

Harry attended his father's coronation without his wife Meghan or their children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet. Harry did not have a formal role during the coronation, and did not appear on the Buckingham Palace balcony with other members of the royal family. He also did not sit with other senior royals, instead sitting three rows back during the ceremony.

His older brother, Prince William, who is first in line for the throne, had a key role in the ceremony.

Harry's relationship with his family has been fractured for several years. In a 2021 interview with Oprah Winfrey and 2022 Netflix documentary, he and Meghan said she faced racism and mistreatment from the British press and claimed the royal family did not offer enough support. Her mental health suffered and they worried about the lack of security for their family, leading the pair to decide to leave their roles as senior royals and settle in California.

Charles and Harry
King Charles and Prince Harry on  April 4, 2019 in London, England.  Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty Images

Despite the strain, Harry said in a 2023 "60 Minutes" profile that he wants to have a relationship with his family. 

"That's all I've ever asked for," he said.

What is the order of succession to the British throne?

Charles will "undertake State business and official paperwork as usual" while being treated, according to Buckingham Palace. 

His son Prince William is next in line for the throne after his father, followed by William's three children and then Prince Harry. Here's a look at who on the royal family tree is in line for the throne, and the order of succession:

  1. Prince William, the Prince of Wales
  2. Prince George of Wales
  3. Princess Charlotte of Wales
  4. Prince Louis of Wales
  5. Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex
  6. Prince Archie of Sussex
  7. Princess Lilibet of Sussex
  8. Prince Andrew, the Duke of York
  9. Princess Beatrice (Mrs. Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi)
  10. Miss Sienna Mapelli Mozzi
  11. Princess Eugenie (Mrs. Jack Brooksbank)
  12. Master August Brooksbank
  13. Master Ernest Brooksbank
  14. Prince Edward, the Duke of Edinburgh
  15. The Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor
  16. Princess Anne, the Princess Royal
  17. Mr. Peter Phillips
  18. Miss Savannah Phillips
  19. Miss Isla Phillips
  20. Zara Tindall (Mrs. Michael Tindall)
  21. Miss Mia Tindall
  22. Miss Lena Tindall
  23. Master Lucas Tindall

 –Tucker Reals and Caitlin O'Kane contributed reporting.

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