A privacy row has ensued after Italian, French, American and German glossies also bought the images, which show the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge walking along a beach while on holiday on the Caribbean island of Mustique.

Aussie magazine Woman’s Day said it will publish the photos, which show Kate Middleton, who is four months pregnant, wearing a bikini.

Editor Fiona Connelly told News Ltd the images had been taken by a fellow tourist and not by a paparazzi photographer. It is reported the magazine paid nearly £100,000 for the 39 images of the royal couple.

“She is on a public beach and she was mingling with holidaymakers,” she said.

“These photos have not been taken by a professional photographer hiding in the bushes.

“They are not nude photos taken with a telescopic lens from inside a private villa. These are images showing her on a happy holiday … and she looks amazing.

“The last time we saw Kate in public she was very ill. She was coming out of hospital, which means there is even more reason to celebrate her looking so healthy and glowing.”

The set of photos is also said to include images of Kate’s sister Pippa Middleton.

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Connelly added it was a “very different situation to the nude photos”, which were published by Italian magazine Chi and the Irish edition of the Daily Star last year.

The long-lens pictures showed Kate Middleton sunbathing topless on the roof of a private chateau in France with her husband Prince William.

Chi has again angered the royal family by publishing the latest images, raising questions about media intrusion into the lives of one of the world’s most famous couples.

Chi’s owner The Mondadori group published a picture of the magazine’s front page on its website which appeared to show the 31-year-old princess wading into the sea in a blue bikini.

Another image showed the duchess strolling arm in arm with William, 30, second in line to the British throne.

The headline read: “Kate & William in Mustique: The belly grows”.

A St James’s Palace spokesman said the decision was “a clear breach of the couple’s right to privacy”.

“We are disappointed that photographs of the Duke and Duchess on a private holiday look likely to be published overseas,” he said.

Chi’s decision to publish the topless images of Kate Middleton in September 2012 were condemned by Prime Minister David Cameron.

It stirred memories of the world media’s relentless pursuit of William’s mother, Princess Diana who died in a car crash in Paris in 1997 as she was being chased by paparazzi.

The couple are expecting their first baby in July. The duchess was admitted to hospital in December suffering from an acute form of morning sickness.

ITV forced to apologise for showing bikini images of Kate Middleton

ITV’s This Morning was forced to issue an on-air apology today after showing the images to millions of views.

The error happened when presenters Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford were discussing the story when the cover of Chi flashed-up without the images blacked-out.

“Earlier during today’s news review we were discussing photographs of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on a beach in Mustique published in an Italian magazine,” Holmes said.

“Unfortunately we accidentally showed an unblurred image of the magazine cover, which briefly showed the photographs. This was a deeply regrettable error and we are very sorry.

“We apologise unreservedly to the Duke and the Duchess.”

Images via Getty