Prince Andrew with President Donald Trump and Dean of Westminster John Hall during Trump's visit to Westminster Abbey on June 3, 2019 in London. (Photo: Chris Jackson/ Getty Images)
As Queen Elizabeth II hosted a NATO reception at Buckingham Palace for a slew of leaders, including President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump, one member of the royal family was noticeably absent: Prince Andrew.
Asked Tuesday about Andrew and his sex scandal involving American convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, Trump denied knowing the queen’s second son even though he has met him several times, including most recently in June, according to photos.
In 2000, Trump was pictured with his then-girlfriend Melania Knauss alongside Andrew and Epstein at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.
“I don’t know Prince Andrew, but it’s a tough story,” Trump told reporters in London. “I don’t know him, no.”
On social media, the photos of Trump with Andrew began to make the rounds.
Apparently he doesn’t know Prince Andrew …. ummmmmm🤷♀️ pic.twitter.com/Aika3bPFEG
Donald Trump: “I don’t know Prince Andrew” pic.twitter.com/KAiaVMbU9o
Andrew, the Duke of York, 59, ordinarily would be present for such a reception.
But Andrew stepped back from all royal duties two weeks ago after an interview he did with the BBC was widely attacked for failing to adequately explain his longtime relationship with Epstein as he responded to allegations he had sex with a 17-year-old two decades ago.
In an interview that aired in the U.K. Monday, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, 36, who has said she was trafficked to Andrew, told her story to the BBC, reiterating her allegations.
In the process, Giuffre, an American who now lives in Australia, appealed to the British public to believe her accusations and not Andrew’s denials.
“I implore the people in the U.K. to stand up beside me and help me fight this fight, to not accept this as being OK,” she said in a clip released by the BBC Monday. “This is not some sordid sex story, this is a story of being trafficked…”
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