Princess Anne made headlines this morning when she was caught on camera shrugging at her mother, Queen Elizabeth II, after she appeared to ignore Donald and Melania Trump. Has a simple shrug ever gone so viral?
President Trump and Melania arrived at a reception at Buckingham Palace for NATO leaders on Tuesday evening. In a the video filmed at the event, the president and First Lady are seen shaking hands with the Queen, Prince Charles, and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. The Queen then turns her head and notices Anne standing a few feet away by a door. She says something inaudible, and Anne gives her an exaggerated shrug, saying “it’s just me and this lot” as the group around her chuckles.
On social media, this event has been widely interpreted as Anne purposefully ignoring Trump and getting a subsequent scolding from her mother, which she quite literally shrugs off.
While the public seems to be interpreting Anne’s actions as a political statement, it may not be the case: as CNN reports, only Charles and Camilla were supposed to be a part of the official royal welcoming party, so Anne might not have been snubbing anybody at all. Buckingham Palace has yet to comment on the matter (and they probably never will).
As a royal, Princess Anne can’t exactly express much publicly, but she is known for having a dry sense of humor. She also finds shaking hands to be “patently absurd,” so who knows what really happened here.
The princess was also filmed alongside British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron, and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte laughing as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau candidly mocked Trump’s behavior at the NATO conference, joking about his need to hold an unscheduled press conference. While Trump is never named explicitly, on Wednesday morning Trudeau admitted that he was discussing the US President after Trump called him “two-faced.”