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Princess Kate has been all over the news since the beginning of 2024. After Kensington Palace revealed that she had underwent a scheduled abdominal surgery, they informed fans that she would not attend public engagements until after Easter (Sunday, March 31, 2023). Nevertheless, the internet is speculating over where the Princess of Wales has been, calling the situation “#KateGate” online. When outlets discovered that some of her social media photos were manipulated, people were convinced that there were AI images of Kate circulating.

Read more about the rumors about the royal below.

Are There AI Photos of Kate Middleton?

There is no evidence proving that artificial intelligence was used to create and spread pictures of Kate on social media. However, her March 10, 2023, Mother’s Day Instagram post sparked controversy because the Associated Press revealed that it was a “manipulated” picture. The AP issued a “kill notification” to journalists and news websites, informing them to avoid using the image.

“At closer inspection it appears that the source has manipulated the image,” the AP noted in its message. “No replacement photo will be sent.”

Moreover, Instagram added the “altered photo/video” label to the post. In response to the issue, Kate penned a brief apology, which she shared via X and to her Instagram Stories.

“Like many amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing,” she admitted. “I wanted to express my apologies for any confusion the family photograph we shared yesterday caused. I hope everyone celebrating had a very happy Mother’s Day.”

One week later, a Getty Images spokesperson informed The Telegraph that an April 2023 image taken by Kate of the late Queen Elizabeth II and her grandchildren had “several inconsistencies” after being “enhanced” by the source.

“Getty Images has reviewed the image in question and placed an editor’s note on it, stating that the image has been digitally enhanced at source,” the rep told the publication on March 18, 2024. Kate did not appear in the picture, but she was reported to have captured it.

What Happened to Princess Kate?

Kate was hospitalized in January 2024 for a “planned abdominal” surgery, Kensington Palace announced.

“Her Royal Highness was admitted to hospital for planned abdominal surgery,” the palace explained in its statement. “The surgery was successful, and it is expected that she will remain in hospital for ten to fourteen days, before returning home to continue her recovery. Based on the current medical advice, she is unlikely to return to public duties until after Easter.”

The statement continued, “The Princess of Wales appreciates the interest this statement will generate. She hopes that the public will understand her desire to maintain as much normality for her children as possible, and her wish that her personal medical information remains private. Kensington Palace will, therefore, only provide updates on Her Royal Highness’ progress when there is significant new information to share.”

Is Kate Middleton Missing?

According to recent reports and photos from social media, the Princess of Wales has been spotted out and about, despite the public’s concern for her well being. In mid-March 2024, she was seen shopping at a local U.K. farm store with husband Prince William.

While the royal is not missing, social media users continue to ponder over her whereabouts, citing their baseless assumption that the palace has been using AI-generated images of her.

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