Britain's Prince Harry is officially engaged to American actress Meghan Markle.
Harry's father, Prince Charles, made the announcement in a statement Monday.
"His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales is delighted to announce the engagement of Prince Harry to Ms. Meghan Markle."
The statement said the wedding will take place in Spring 2018 and "Further details about the wedding day will be announced in due course."
Hours after the engagement was made public, the couple posed for photographers on the grounds of Kensington Palace.
The couple became engaged in London earlier this month, according to the statement.
Watch the video of Prince Harry's engagement
Harry "informed The Queen and other close members of his family," the announcement said, and ". . . also sought and received the blessing of Ms. Markle's parents."
An official announcement had been expected after Markle, in a recent interview with Vanity Fair magazine, spoke of her relationship with Harry, saying, "We're a couple. We're in love."
Markle's parents also released a statement, saying "We are incredibly happy for Meghan and Harry. Our daughter has always been a kind and loving person. To see her union with Harry, who shares the same qualities, is a source of great joy for us as parents."
Markle's parents, Thomas Markle and Doria Ragland, are divorced.
Markle is best-known for her work in the television drama Suits.
She is a Global Ambassador for World Vision Canada, which campaigns for better education, food and health care for children around the world. As well as her humanitarian work, she is known for campaigning for gender equality.
Markle was previously married to film producer Trevor Engelson.
The prince and the actress made their first public appearance in September in Toronto at the Invictus Games, a sports event for wounded veterans.
The two said they were set up on a blind date by a mutual friend. In their first joint interview, the duo declined to identify the friend. Markle said the only question she asked the friend was, 'Is he nice?' Because if he wasn't kind, it just didn't — it didn't seem like it would make sense," she said.
Last year, Harry, who is fifth in line to the throne, issued a statement decrying the media coverage of his girlfriend, condemning the "outright racism and sexism of social media trolls and web article comments," as well as the racial stereotypes used in some newspapers.
Markle is biracial. Her father is white. Her mother is black.
Markle said she found the press scrutiny of her ethnicity "disheartening," but added that she and Harry have "never put any focus on that; we've just focused on who we are as a couple."