KOMPAS.com - A FIRST-BORN daughter of Prince William and Kate Middleton could become Queen under constitutional changes being considered by Britain's coalition government.
Ministers are negotiating with Commonwealth governments about possible changes to the Act of Settlement to give female royals the same rights of succession as their brothers.
Under the current law, any male child takes precedence in the order of succession over his sisters. That would mean that any son born to Prince William would become king, even if he had an older sister.
The coalition believes the law may be discriminatory and is considering ways to change it. That would mean changing the law in every one of the 15 Commonwealth countries where the Queen is head of state.
When he was prime minister, Gordon Brown began work on amending the Act of Settlement, which also forbids Catholics from taking the crown.
The Constitutional Affairs Minister, Mark Harper, said the coalition had continued that work. "Ministers have already accepted that the provisions of the Act of Settlement might be discriminatory. Discussions are under way," he said.
Keith Vaz, a Labour MP, on Tuesday introduced a bill to the Commons proposing the change. It will be debated in May.
'As it stands, any daughters of Prince William would not succeed their father to the throne if they had a male sibling younger than them," , Mr Vaz said.
The Prime Minister, David Cameron, is expected to discuss changing the act at a summit of Commonwealth leaders in Australia this year.
Concerns about succession were raised in 2007 when Sophie, Countess of Wessex, gave birth to a son. James, Viscount Severn, displaced his older sister in the order of succession.