updated - May 19, 2013 Sunday EDT
An Irish tabloid has published nine full color topless photos of the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton, even after the Royal Family sent out a stern statement as they are still reeling from the Prince Harry nude Vegas photo scandal.
The Irish Daily Star follows French magazine Closer, and Italian gossip magazine Chi as it publishes the topless photos of Kate Middleton and Prince William while the couple were on holiday in the south of France. The Irish paper ran the nine pictures which were not pixelated in today's paper over two inside pages.
Topless photos of Kate Middleton sunbathing in just a bikini bottom has been leaked and printed online and in print by a French tabloid magazine, Closer. The grainy photos of the royal couple, most likely taken with a long lens, which show Kate Middleton sunbathing topless with Prince William on a balcony at a 19th century hunting lodge in southern France, in early September. In another picture, she bends over pulling down her bikini bottoms while Prince William touches her bare bottom.
Editor Mike O'Kane from the Irish Daily Star told the BBC the photos did not feature in the edition distributed in Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom. In response to the photos St James Palace has issued a strongly worded statement.
"OH MY GOD!" the cover reads with the words "world exclusive," on top of a montage of uncensored pictures. Inside, there's a five-page spread of the couple relaxing, clearly oblivious to the prying paparazzi. (Click here to see uncensored versions of Kate Middleton topless photos)
In another photo, Kate is seen rubbing suntan lotion on William's back. In another, William rubs suntan lotion on her almost-bare bottom. Closer also claims Kate was spotted smoking a cigarette as the couple walked out of nearby Marseille airport where they arrived on a commercial flight.
Moments after the topless photos went public; the Royal Family issued a scathing statement saying "Their royal highnesses have been hugely saddened to learn that a French publication and a photographer have invaded their privacy in such a grotesque and totally unjustifiable manner."
In the statement, the Royal Family said the incident is "reminiscent of the worst excesses of the press and paparazzi during the life of Diana, Princess of Wales" ... who died in a car crash while fleeing from the paparazzi in France back in 1997.
Officials said the royal family was considering legal action for invasion of privacy in the same country Princess Diana died.
Closer magazine has a UK version as well, which immediately issued a statement and distanced itself from its French counterpart, saying it would "like to make it clear that the two publications make entirely independent editorial decisions. In this respect the comments made by the Editor of the French edition which have reported in the media today do not reflect the opinions of Closer magazine UK."
Meanwhile, Prince William and Kate baby rumors sparked again during a tour to Singapore and the Duchess chose to toast with a glass of water as opposed to the tradition champagne.
The 30-year-old Duchess, the subject of pregnancy rumors since the day she and Prince William wed last April, is sparking rumors once again that she may be carrying a royal heir after choosing water over wine at an official state dinner with Singapore's president and prime minister.
While William, 30, and others raised glasses of wine to toast the country's Queen, Kate, dressed fashionably in a gown by Singapore-born designer Prabal Garang, politely declined the alcoholic beverage, sparking pregnancy rumors.
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