York protester throws eggs at King Charles

Explanation

LONDON – King Charles III and Queen Camilla were visiting the city of York on Wednesday when a protester threw at least three eggs at them and shouted “this country was built on the blood of slaves”.

The man missed his target and was soon arrested by the police while the crowd chanted “God save the King”.

Charles seemed unfazed by the commotion — though he was walking around eggs strewn on the floor — and continued to chat with city leaders as he strolled down the street. He and Camilla were in the northern city to unveil a statue of his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II.

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King Charles III wants to look ahead. The “crown” pulls him back.

The role of Britain – and the British royal family – in the slave trade has come under increasing scrutiny in some countries where the British monarch is still head of state. When Prince William and his wife Catherine visited the Caribbean earlier this year, activists called on the monarchy to apologize and support reparations for slavery.

Charles is apparently ready to engage in the subject. On Tuesday, during a visit to Leeds, he met with artists involved in a project exploring Britain’s role in slavery. Afterward, Fiona Compton, an artist and historian whose father was prime minister of St. Lucia, told reporters that Charles “says he’s willing to talk about it.”

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The new king has only been in office for two months, but Wednesday is not the first time he has faced protests.

In the days after the queen’s death, several people were arrested for organizing demonstrations. A woman was arrested in Edinburgh, Scotland, where the Queen was sleeping, for holding an offensive sign with the words “abolish the monarchy”. Another was arrested for chanting “who elected him” as the document officially declaring Charles king was read aloud in Oxford, England. The police response has sparked a debate about freedom of speech in Britain.

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Wednesday was not the first time the royal egg was dropped.

During the Queen’s 1986 royal visit to New Zealand, she was pelted by a woman protesting Britain’s treaty with Maori tribes. The princess was in an open car and the egg was dripping from her pink shirt.

Wednesday’s launch coincided with the release of the fifth series of “The Crown” on Netflix. Times are grim for Charles, who is in the early days of his reign. The series focuses on the 1990s and revisits the breakdown of his marriage to Princess Diana.

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