Queen Elizabeth II says she has agreed to grant Prince Harry and Meghan their wish for a more independent life that will see them move part-time to Canada.
The 93-year-old monarch summoned Prince Charles, heir to the throne, and his sons, princes William and Harry, to Sandringham House in England to thrash out difficult issues that may take weeks to resolve. Meghan was expected to take part by telephone from Canada.
Following today's meeting the Queen issued a statement saying her family had a "very constructive discussions on the future of my grandson and his family".
"My family and I are entirely supportive of Harry and Meghan’s desire to create a new life as a young family," the statement read.
"Although we would have preferred them to remain full-time working Members of the Royal Family, we respect and understand their wish to live a more independent life as a family while remaining a valued part of my family.
"Harry and Meghan have made clear that they do not want to be reliant on public funds in their new lives.
"It has therefore been agreed that there will be a period of transition in which the Sussexes will spend time in Canada and the UK.
"These are complex matters for my family to resolve, and there is some more."
Prince Harry and Meghan are charismatic senior royals known throughout the world. Many saw them as playing a vital role in building the monarchy's popularity with future generations. But they both seem disillusioned and unhappy and have now said they want to step back from royal duties, become financially independent, and spend much of their time in North America. This has caused a fissure at the highest ranks of the world's best known royal family.