Prince Andrew defers military promotion honour

Britain's Prince Andrew.

London, ┬áThe UK’s Prince Andrew has asked to defer an honorary Navy promotion he was due to receive when he turned 60, according to the Buckingham Palace.

Prince Andrew was set to be promoted to Admiral on February 19, in line with a policy that sees senior royals treated as serving military members, the BBC said in a report.

But the Palace said on Friday that he had asked the Ministry of Defence to defer it until a time when he returns to public duty.

He stepped back from royal duties last November after a backlash over his past friendship with late American financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Meanwhile, the government has said it would be advising local councils that there was no requirement to fly the Union flag on the the Duke’s birthday, following his decision to step back from public duties.

Downing Street said the matter was looked into after critics branded the celebration “crass and offensive”.

But it has been confirmed that the bells of Westminster Abbey will still ring out in celebration, said the BBC report.

Certain royal birthdays, including the duke’s, are traditionally marked by the ringing of bells at the Abbey.

A spokeswoman for the abbey said there were “no plans to change these arrangements”.