LONDON – Britain’s King Charles III will travel to Germany on Wednesday for his first foreign trip as monarch, after strikes and protests in France led to the cancellation of a state visit under the law. His plan is there.
During a three-day visit to Berlin and Hamburg, the king and his wife, Camilla, the queen, will attend a state dinner hosted by President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his wife Elke Büdenbender at Bellevue Palace. Germany the president’s residence, according to a statement from Buckingham Palace.
On Thursday, Charles will address the German parliament, the Bundestag, and will then meet with newly arrived refugees from Ukraine. On Friday, Charles and Camilla will take the train to Hamburg, where they will visit the Kindertransport memorial, the effort between 1938 and 1940 that brought about 10,000 Jewish children to Britain safely from Nazi Germany.
Cancellation of the French leg of the trip represents an uncomfortable moment for the country’s president, Emmanuel Macron, who was scheduled to host the king and queen in Paris on Sunday.
The king’s visit to France will feature a lavish state banquet at the Palace of Versailles, a move that is particularly ill-timed for Mr. strikes, demonstrations and potentially violent demonstrations about plans to raise the legal retirement age from 62 to 64. Last week, Mr. Macron said it would be a mistake to organize a state visit “among the protests”. He said Britain and France would work to organize a new visit in early summer.
On a trip to Germany, Europe’s largest economy, on his first royal visit, Prince Charles emphasized Britain’s intention to strengthen ties with the European Union after Britain’s departure. The exit from the bloc caused diplomatic relations to become strained.
The British royal family has a long relationship with Germany. George I, who reigned from 1714 to 1727, was a native of Hanover, what would become Germany. He succeeded Queen Anne, his second cousin, who died childless. (Her closer family members are banned from the British throne because they were Roman Catholic.)
In 1917, King George V founded the House of Windsor, abandoning the royal house’s German name, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, because of increased anti-German sentiment during World War I. That name went into the family. in 1840 with the marriage of Queen Victoria to Prince Albert, whose father was the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.
The last time Charles spoke to the Bundestag was during the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, when he was still a prince, and start your speech in German. Most recently, he went to Hamburg in 1995 to attend a ceremony commemorating the end of World War II.
Christopher F. Schuetze contribution report from Berlin.