The cost of security for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in Canada lies at the centre of government negotiations.
Experts have claimed the couple’s £1million protection bill could triple when they start their new life abroad.
Senior police fear Britain could be forced to pay, as most countries are responsible for the security of their “internationally protected people” overseas – a designation the couple had claimed on their website that they held. The claim has since been removed.
In the UK, at least six armed officers accompany Harry and Meghan at all times. This was upped to 10 during their seven-week holiday in Canada.
One former Scotland Yard senior officer said: “Protecting the couple abroad will be much harder and much more expensive for British officers.
"They will need integrated intelligence systems, CCTV, drawbridges, safe rooms – that all needs to be paid for.”
Buckingham Palace did not comment. Canadian PM Justin Trudeau said there were “lots of discussions to have”.
It has led to crisis talks over how the UK public might be expected to pick up the bill.
Some experts have claimed the couple’s UK £1 million security bill could rise to £3 million or more when they settle abroad permanently.
In the UK an armed team of at least six officers accompany the Duke and Duchess of Sussex accompanied them at all times.
This was upped to ten who worked around the clock during their seven-week holiday in Canada. This came with added food, flight and accommodation costs.
This number could rise to keep them protected 24/7 when they settle and will include static security staff, bodyguards to accompany them on trips and errands, as well as specialist protection officers day and night.
A former Senior Office at Scotland Yard said private bodyguards are not skilled enough to provide the level of protection needed by the couple.
Harry needs a specialist level of protection thanks to his role as a former Army captain who served in Afghanistan.
He added: “There are so many questions to answer. The big questions are where are they going to live? Is the Canadian Government going to pay for it?
“Who will protect them if they go to America, the American government? Who will provide the support function for protection officers?
“There are a multitude of issues that appear to not have been worked out.
“Wherever the couple make their home, that building will have to be fitted out so it’s safe. They will need integrated intelligence systems, CCTV, drawbridges, safe rooms – that all needs to be paid for.
“It’s also complicated by the fact there is still very much a risk of terrorism. Harry is more at risk because he was in the army.
“There are also totally unregulated paparazzi who pose a risk.
“Protecting the couple abroad will be much harder and much more expensive for British officers thanks to the distance involved.
“It would be much easier in London because of the skills and support our security forces have here.”
He said the couple’s claim to be “internationally protected” was questionable as that classification is not usually given to VIPs.
But Britain could still be forced to pick up the bill as most countries are responsible for the security of their important people abroad.
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