Yesterday, the Danish Royal Family attended the official opening of the Danish Parliament at Christianborg Palace in Copenhagen. Queen Margrethe, the Crown Prince Couple, Prince Joachim and Princess Marie, as well as Princess Benedikte, were received by official members of the Parliament just before noon when the first session of the parliamentary year began.
The Danish Royal family has a passive role in this opening, in opposition to the royal families of Sweden, the Netherlands or the United Kingdom. Indeed, Queen Margrethe doesn’t make a speech during the opening, but the Royal Family are present, as a symbol, during the first session. There is no parliamentary debate during the first session, but the Prime Minister makes a speech in front of the members of the parliament.
Before the official opening at Christianborg Palace, the members of Parliament attended a church service in Christianborg Palace’s Church, which the Royal Family doesn’t attend. The opening of the Parliament takes place each year on the first Tuesday of October. This year, the day also marked the 10th anniversary of the announcement of Prince Joachim and Princess Marie’s engagement.
The first session was not without a few issues this year. Usually, all members of Parliament wait inside the Palace for the Royal Family’s arrival and watch them take their seat in the Royal Box. This year, some members of Parliament decided to stay outside the room; they are part of a radical left party who recently added the abolition of the monarchy in their political programme. Then, during the session, a woman made her way through security and threw papers from the balcony on the members of Parliament sitting below.
The Royal Family has attended the opening of Parliament since 1968; Crown Prince Frederik and Prince Joachim both started attending the opening beginning when they were 18.