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Martin Bashir is speaking out in light of the recent release of an internal investigation that found he used "deceitful" behavior to secure his 1995 BBC interview with Princess Diana. The sit-down interview became famous because Princess Di revealed that Prince Charles was having an affair with his now-wife Camilla Parker-Bowles. The late royal discussed their "crowded" marriage.
The investigation claims that Martin commissioned fake bank statements to manipulate Diana into the interview. Martin and the BBC issued an apology, but Martin told The Times that he was never malicious toward Diana.
"I never wanted to harm Diana in any way and I don't believe we did," he explained. "Everything we did in terms of the interview was as she wanted, from when she wanted to alert the palace, to when it was broadcast, to its contents."
He added, "My family and I loved her." But, he also admitted that he's not sure if he'll be able to forgive himself for the way he acted. "That's a really difficult question because it was a serious error," Martin said. "I hope that people will allow me the opportunity to show that I am properly repentant of what happened."
Prince William and Prince Harry issued separate statements after discovering the investigation's findings.
Read William's statement below:
"I would like to thank Lord Dyson and his team for the report...it is welcome that the BBC accepts Lord Dyson's findings in full—which are extremely concerning—that BBC employees: lied and used fake documents to obtain the interview with my mother; made lurid and false claims about the Royal Family which played on her fears and fuelled paranoia; displayed woeful incompetence when investigating complaints and concerns about the programme; and were evasive in their reporting to the media and covered up what they knew from their internal investigation.
It is my view that the deceitful way the interview was obtained substantially influenced what my mother said. The interview was a major contribution to making my parents' relationship worse and has since hurt countless others."
Read Harry's statement below:
"Our mother was an incredible woman who dedicated her life to service. She was resilient, brave, and unquestionably honest. The ripple effect of a culture of exploitation and unethical practices ultimately took her life.
To those who have taken some form of accountability, thank you for owning it. That is the first step towards justice and truth. Yet what deeply concerns me is that practices like these—and even worse—are still widespread today. Then, and now, it's bigger than one outlet, one network, or one publication.
Our mother lost her life because of this, and nothing has changed. By protecting her legacy, we protect everyone, and uphold the dignity with which she lived her life. Let's remember who she was and what she stood for."
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