Official visit to Mexico
On Monday, Their Royal Highnesses The Crown Prince and Crown Princess began their official visit to Mexico, which is scheduled for 16-19 March. They are leading a large delegation from Norwegian trade and industry and cultural life.
Mexico was among the first countries to recognise Norway’s independence following the dissolution of the union in 1905, and the two countries have enjoyed good diplomatic relations ever since. The official visit began in Mexico City with a wreath-laying ceremony at the Los Niños Héroes national monument.
Los Niños Héroes
During the Mexican-American War of 1847, six military cadets between 13 and 20 years of age died while defending Chapultepec Castle in Mexico City, which at the time served as a military academy. The memorial known as Los Niños Héroes – the boy heroes – was raised in their honour. Today Los Niños Héroes is a national monument, and all official visits to Mexico usually include a wreath-laying ceremony at the site.
Crown Prince Haakon laid the wreath at the monument during the formal ceremony.
Following the ceremony at the Los Niños Héroes national monument, the Crown Prince and Crown Princess paid a visit to the Frida Kahlo Museum.
Frida Kahlo (1907-1954) was a Mexican painter whose works have gained international recognition in recent years. Her paintings employ bold colours inspired by the indigenous cultures of Mexico, and contain elements of European realism, symbolism and surrealism. Along with her husband Diego Rivera, also a painter, Kahlo was a central figure in the intellectual milieu of Mexico at the time.
The Crown Prince and Crown Princess were given a guided tour of the Frida Kahlo Museum in Coyoacán, also referred to as “The Blue House”, which originally served as Kahlo and Rivera’s residence and Kahlo’s studio.
Welcoming ceremony at Los Pinos
The official welcoming ceremony took place at Los Pinos, the official residence of the President of Mexico, where Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit were received by President Felipe Calderón and his wife Margarita Zavala in a small annex connected to the residence. The Crown Prince and Crown Princess will have meetings with President Calderón and Mrs. Zavala again later in the visit.
Norwegian photo exhibition
On Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City’s most renowned boulevard, Crown Prince Haakon opened a photo exhibition entitled “Norway – Powered by Nature”. The photographs are categorised into the four seasons and illustrate how Norwegians live in, with and from the natural environment. The exhibition is a collaborative effort between StatoilHydro, the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Norwegian Embassy in Mexico. The photographs will be displayed on the boulevard for one month.
On Tuesday, the Crown Prince will begin his day at a trade and industry seminar, while Crown Princess Mette-Marit will visit Clínica Especializada Condesa, an HIV/AIDS clinic.
Condolences from His Majesty King Harald to His Holiness Pope Francis.
Congratulations from His Majesty King Harald to the new President of the Federative Republic of Brazil, His Excellency Mr Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.