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Britain's Prince Harry to marry American actress Megan Markle

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle pose for the media in the grounds of Kensington Palace in London, Monday Nov. 27, 2017./ AP-Yonhap

By Chyung Eun-ju

Britain's Prince Harry, fifth in line to the throne, is engaged to American actress Megan Markle, according to the royal family on Monday.

The prince, 33, told reporters he knew Markle, 36, was "the one" from "the very first time we met." Markle said she was "very happy" and showed reporters the engagement ring that Harry had designed.

The couple dated for more than a year and made their first public appearance at the Invictus Games in Toronto in September. Mutual friends introduced the two in London on July 2016.

Prince Charles, Harry's father, announced the marriage in a statement released from his office at Clarence House. The statement said they would marry next spring.

Britain's Prince Harry stands with his fiancee Meghan Markle as she shows off her engagement ring whilst they pose for a photograph in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace in west London on November 27, 2017, following the announcement of their engagement./ AFP-Yonhap

The couple posed for photographs outside Kensington Palace in London, which will be their future residence.

Markle, who is well known for her role in the hit U.S. TV show "Suits," has drawn attention because of her ethnic and middle-class background ― her mother is an African-American yoga instructor and her father is a white cinematographer. She is also divorced.

Prince Harry is not the first British royal to have fallen in love with an American divorcee. King Edward VIII abdicated so he could marry American socialite Wallis Simpson in 1936, causing a constitutional crisis.

The palace did not confirm which titles would be conferred on the Prince Harry and his fiancee after they married. They are expected to be known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

However, if Prince Harry were to decline the dukedom, he would remain Prince Henry of Wales. Markle cannot become an official princess, because only daughters of royals can carry this title.

Chyung Eun-ju

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