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UK Prince Andrew steps back from public duties over scandal

Andrew said his former association with Epstein had become a “major disruption” to the royal family.

SNS | New Delhi |

The UK Prince Andrew announced on Wednesday that he is stepping back from royal duties over the Jeffrey Epstein scandal.

Andrew said in a statement that he would end his public work “for the foreseeable future “over his links to the convicted sex offender.

He also offered to help police investigating allegations against the disgraced hedge-fund manager and accused sex trafficker.

Andrew said his former association with Epstein had become a “major disruption” to the royal family.

“Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission,” he added.

Andrew’s statement said his death “has left many unanswered questions, particularly for his victims, and I deeply sympathise with everyone who has been affected and wants some form of closure”.

In a televised debate on Tuesday night, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the monarchy was “beyond reproach” while opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said the institution “needs a bit of improvement” and that there were questions to be answered.

The 59-year-old has been accused of having sex with a 17-year-old girl, Virginia Roberts, in 2001 after going to a London nightclub.

Epstein, who was known for friendships with high-profile figures such as US Presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, and Israeli former Prime Minister Ehud Barak, faced up to 45 years in prison if convicted.