Prince Harry looks sombre alongside a beaming Meghan Markle in first outing since birthday row

Prince Harry was snapped looking sombre as he stood alongside a beaming Meghan Markle as the duo stepped out for their first public appearance after a representative issued a statement claiming they didn’t receive an invite for the King’s birthday celebrations.

The royal couple, who matched in smart black blazers, stepped out to inaugurate a new veteran centre in Downtown San Diego. Meghan was all smiles in a stylish black outfit as she joined officials for the cutting of the ribbon.

Harry opted for a more relaxed look as he wore a white shirt under his blazer with no tie and the top buttons undone. The Duke also appeared less happy than his wife and looked sombre while listening to the speeches.

The couple were thanked for their support, and the royal attendance followed shortly after they did not make the guest list for His Majesty's upcoming 75th birthday gathering at Clarence House.

There has been a bit of confusion surrounding the couple's attendance as The Sunday Times reported Harry had been invited but chose not to go. However, other reports suggest they were never invited in the first place.

A representative for the couple stated to the Daily Mail: “There has been no contact regarding an invitation to His Majesty's upcoming birthday. It is disappointing the Sunday Times has misreported this story”.

OK! has contacted Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's representatives for comment.

Although there has been confusion, leading royal expert Jennie Bond told OK! That Harry and Meghan’s absence will stop Charles' family evening becoming 'horribly awkward'.

The expert said: "Imagine how horribly awkward his presence would make the whole evening. What we have now is a pretty stable, happy family unit in the King and Queen, William and Catherine, the Edinburghs and the Princess Royal and their families."

"On the other side of the Atlantic, we have the estranged and disgruntled outsiders, Harry and Meghan. If they, or just Harry, rocked up at Clarence House it would inevitably put a real dampener on the celebration.

"The air is still heavy with recrimination and hurt on both sides. That needs to be sorted before the family can genuinely unite in celebration."

2023 will mark King Charles's 75th birthday and second as monarch, following the passing of his mother Queen Elizabeth II on September 8, 2022.

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