Fact Check: Is Kate Middleton Toasting Aide Who Accused Meghan Markle of Bullying in Photo?

Meghan Markle made a public apology this week for unintentionally misleading a court by the same aide who accused her of bullying.

A number of explosive revelations in the Duchess of Sussex's privacy battle with the Mail on Sunday have emerged in relation to her lawsuit against the newspaper for publishing extracts of a letter sent to her father in August 2018.

Meghan's former communications secretary Jason Knauf released a witness statement this week saying that she wrote the letter in question to her father in the knowledge it may be leaked.

This is significant because Knauf was working for the former royal in 2018 amid bullying accusations made against her.

Knauf wrote an email in October 2018 accusing Meghan of bullying two PAs out of Kensington Palace.

The former palace staffer also worked as the CEO of Prince William and Kate Middleton's Duke Royal Foundation until earlier this year.

Now, a photo circulating online shows Kate Middleton seemingly toasting Knauf in celebration.

The Claim

The image shared across social media this week circulating online this week is from the Duchess of Cambridge's appearance at the COP26 summit in Glasgow, Scotland.

She and Prince William where present at the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference to represent the royal family.

The photo in question has been described on social media as Middleton toasting the former palace aide.

"Kate Middleton toasting Jason Knauf-- the man who crafted the racist, hate, vitriolic campaign against Meghan Markle together with Kate Middleton and Prince William? They're best friends, huh?" reads a tweet by Twitter user Carmen's Granddaughter with 827 likes.

Kate Middleton toasting Jason Knauf-- the man who crafted the racist, hate, vitriolic campaign against Meghan Markle together with Kate Middleton and Prince William? They're best friends, huh? pic.twitter.com/ydJ5vpoDrA

— Carmen's Granddaughter (@CarmenGranddau1) November 3, 2021

Another Twitter user shared the photo and tweeted: "Jason Knauf. Was he lying then or is he lying now? Perjuring yourself for what? Thinking face anyway, here he is with his boss Kate Middleton last week."

Jason Knauf. Was he lying then or is he lying now? Perjuring yourself for what? 🤔 anyway, here he is with his boss Kate Middleton last week. pic.twitter.com/6oZfi70Ac3

— Anna (@Anna__with_an_A) November 9, 2021

While another shared the photo and wrote that Kanuf and the Duchess of Cambridge are "besties."

"Jason knauf, prince william and kate middleton bestie," the caption reads.

Jason knauf, prince william and kate middleton bestie pic.twitter.com/Gm2eTP8Rlu

— Selwa 🌸 سلوى 🌸ⵙⵍⵓⴻ (@w_selwa) November 11, 2021

The Facts

While Kate Middleton and Jason Knauf are laughing together in a photo taken at COP26, the royal is not toasting her former staffer.

The photo was taken by photographer Daniel Leal-Olivas. Kate Middleton is not raising a glass, but is in fact holding a tub of dead larvae.

Kate Middleton
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (C) laughs as she offers a tub of dead larvae, used as livestock feed, to guests at a reception for the key members of the Sustainable Markets Initiative and the Winners and Finalists of the first Earthshot Prize Awards at the Clydeside Distillery, on the sidelines of the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland on November 1, 2021. - COP26, running from October 31 to November 12 in Glasgow will be the biggest climate conference since the 2015 Paris summit and is seen as crucial in setting worldwide emission targets to slow global warming, as well as firming up other key commitments. DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

The caption of the photo by Getty reads: "Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (C) laughs as she offers a tub of dead larvae, used as livestock feed, to guests at a reception for the key members of the Sustainable Markets Initiative and the Winners and Finalists of the first Earthshot Prize Awards at the Clydeside Distillery, on the sidelines of the COP26 summit on November 1, 2021 in Glasgow, United Kingdom."

On Getty, there are numerous photos of the Duchess of Cambridge jokingly teasing her husband Prince William with the container of larvae.

Kate Middleton, Prince William
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (L) offers a tub of dead larvae, used as livestock feed, to her husband the Prince William, Duke of Cambridge (R) while they speak with guests at a reception for the key members of the Sustainable Markets Initiative and the Winners and Finalists of the first Earthshot Prize Awards at the Clydeside Distillery, on the sidelines of the COP26 summit on November 1, 2021 in Glasgow, United Kingdom. 2021 sees the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference. The conference will run from 31 October for two weeks, finishing on 12 November. It was meant to take place in 2020 but was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Daniel Leal-Olivas/Pool / Getty Images

The Ruling

Fact Check - False

False.

FACT CHECK BY Newsweek

No, Kate Middleton is not toasting Meghan Markle's former aide Jason Knauf in a photo from the COP26 summit in Glasgow.