Official visit from Belgium
Their Majesties King Philippe and Queen Mathilde were in Norway on an official visit today. Their Majesties King Harald and Queen Sonja hosted their visit, and welcomed the Belgian King and Queen yesterday evening.
King Philippe succeeded King Albert II on the Belgian throne on 21 July 2013 upon King Albert’s abdication. King Philippe and Queen Mathilde are currently paying friendship visits to countries with close ties to Belgium. The Belgian King and Queen arrived in Oslo yesterday evening from Stockholm, directly following their official visit to Sweden.
The Storting was the first stop on today’s programme for King Philippe and Queen Mathilde, and they were greeted by the President of the Storting, Olemic Thommessen. After a brief visit to the Storting Chamber, the King and Queen engaged in more detailed talks with Mr Thommessen.
Following the visit to the Storting, the King and Queen visited the government complex to meet with Prime Minister Erna Solberg.
1814 at Norsk Folkemuseum
After their meetings with the President of the Storting and the Prime Minister, the Belgian King and Queen visited Norsk Folkemuseum on the Bygdøy peninsula, where they were received by King Harald and Queen Sonja. Some 80 children waving the Norwegian and the Belgian flag had also come to the museum square to greet the guests.
Curator Monica Mørck led the Royal guests on a guided tour of the museum’s exhibition on the bicentenary of the Norwegian Constitution, entitled “1814 – A Norwegian Drama”. The exhibition was formally opened by Queen Sonja on 14 January, 200 years to the day that Denmark was forced to cede Norway to Sweden in accordance with the Treaty of Kiel.
Luncheon at the Royal Palace
After official photographs in the Bird Room, King Harald and Queen Sonja hosted a luncheon at the Royal Palace in honour of the Belgian King and Queen. Crown Prince Haakon, Crown Princess Mette-Marit and Princess Astrid, Mrs Ferner were also in attendance.
King Philippe and Queen Mathilde departed from Norway in the afternoon.
The King and Queen opened the new MUNCH
"I think that I speak for all of us when I say that we have been looking forward to this day! It is finally possible for us to gather together, and soon the great doors will open up a new attraction – not just for our capital city, but for Norway, and for the world," said His Majesty The King.
Congratulations from His Majesty King Harald to His Excellency Mr Alar Karis, President of the Republic of Estonia.