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Why Kate Middleton’s ‘first picture since surgery’ had to be removed by official agencies

Why Kate Middleton’s ‘first picture since surgery’ had to be removed by official agencies

The photo was shared on Mother's Day before being pulled by official agencies

The first picture of Kate Middleton since her surgery earlier this year has been removed by multiple picture agencies following claims of being allegedly 'manipulated'.

The Princess of Wales has been absent from Royal duties for months after undergoing planned abdominal surgery on 16 January - with her last public appearance being on Christmas Day 2023.

On Sunday morning (10 March), Kensington Palace's X account released a picture of Kate which showed her surrounded by her three children — Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis — as she sat smiling at the camera.

On Sunday, Kensington Palace posted the first picture of Kate Middleton with her children for Mother's Day.

The snap was accompanied by a message reading: "Thank you for your kind wishes and continued support over the last two months.

"Wishing everyone a Happy Mother's Day. C."

However, some social media users took it upon themselves to study the image - leading to some 'odd' details being supposedly discovered.

A close study of the image revealed several inconsistencies, like the alignment of Princess Charlotte's hand with the sleeve of her cardigan and Prince Louis' apparent 'missing finger'.

ITV's Royal editor Chris Ship has since shared that 'at least 3 International pictures agencies refuse to distribute' the image.

People were quick to point out some apparent inconsistencies in the picture.

Ship posted to X: "Mandatory 'Kill Notice' from @AFP - a huge international picture agency which says there is an 'editorial issue' with Kensington Palace’s photo and has told clients to remove it (I suspect more people will see it as a result)."

The Associated Press have since explained their reasoning behind the decision - namely that they do not use 'altered or digitally manipulated images'.

While adding that there was 'no suggestion that the image was fake', they said on their site: "Changes in density, contrast, color and saturation levels that substantially alter the original scene are not acceptable.

"Backgrounds should not be digitally blurred or eliminated by burning down or by aggressive toning. The removal of “red eye” from photographs is not permissible."

After 'examining it more closely', they decided to immediately retract the image and instruct their clients to remove the photo from their systems.

"At closer inspection it appears that the source has manipulated the image," the AP said in its advisory to clients.

"No replacement photo will be sent."

As of right now (11 March), the photograph still remains on the @KensingtonRoyal X account, however, a community note is attached which reads: "Major news agencies, including the Associated Press, Getty Images, and Reuters, note inconsistencies that suggest digital alteration by Kensington Palace."

After speculation arose online of the Princess' whereabouts, her representatives were forced to issue a statement stating that that she was 'doing well'.

They said they would only provide further updates 'when there is significant new information to share'.

LADbible has contacted Kensington Palace for comment.

Featured Image Credit: X/@KensingtonRoyal

Topics: News, Royal Family, Kate Middleton