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Australian unis cut ties with Britain's Prince Andrew

Businesses and universities in the United Kingdom have already announced they will no longer associate themselves with the Prince or his charities.

FILE: Britain's Prince Andrew. Picture: AFP.

SYDNEY - Two Australian universities severed ties with a charity founded by Prince Andrew on Wednesday after the British royal refused to recant his friendship with late sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Bond University and RMIT University in Melbourne said they would no longer work with "Pitch@Palace" - a charity founded by the Duke of York to promote entrepreneurship.

Queensland's Bond University said it had planned to review its work with "Pitch@Palace" next year, but brought forward the decision.

"In light of recent events, the university does not intend to seek any further involvement," a spokesperson told AFP.

RMIT University said its "involvement with Pitch@Palace concluded in October 2019" and would not be renewed.

"We remain steadfast in our commitment to ensuring RMIT is a safe and inclusive place to work and study," the university said.

A third Australian institution, Murdoch University said it "is currently reviewing its support of the Pitch@Palace event in 2020".

Businesses and universities in the United Kingdom have already announced they will no longer associate themselves with the Prince or his charities.

This came after he denied having sex with a 17-year-old girl during a lengthy and much-condemned BBC interview in which he also described Epstein's behaviour as "unbecoming".

The 66-year-old was found dead in New York's Metropolitan Correctional Center on 10 August as he awaited trial on allegations that he trafficked girls as young as 14 for sex.

Standard Chartered and KPMG had already indicated they would review ties with the Prince's charities.