HRH The Prince of Wales arrived in Romania on Wednesday, starting a nine-day tour of Europe which will also include visits to Italy, Austria and the Holy See. Prince Charles was greeted by a guard of honour as he departed the plane. He travelled to Romania in the prime ministerial jet, which was nicknamed ‘Cam Force One’ due to Former Prime Minister David Cameron’s extensive use of the aircraft.
The Prince also laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, where he met British troops currently stationed in Bucharest at the NATO Headquarters.
He also shook hands with the President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, at the Cotroceni Palace in Bucharest.
President Iohannis presented His Royal Highness with The Order of the Star of Romania, Romania’s highest civilian order and the only one which can be awarded to foreign nationals. The honour recognises exceptional services to the Romanian State and its people.
In a move which could be seen as an attempt to improve British relations with Romania as Brexit looms, The Prince told The President “It means a great deal to me to have built a special partnership with Romania. I know the United Kingdom has also built a very deep and special partnership with your country and I know that will endure.”
In return, President Iohannis paid tribute to His Royal Highness’ “extraordinary contribution to the relationship between our countries.”
The Prince of Wales has close ties with Romania. In His Royal Highness’ own words “I am enormously proud of having a Transylvanian Great, Great, Great Grandmother (herself descended from Vlad the Impaler, thus giving me at least a small stake in your country!) and of the fact that my Great, Great Aunt was the much-loved Queen Marie of Romania from 1914-1938.”
This connection to Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for the Count Dracula stories, is something which The Prince finds amusing and he owns a country retreat in the infamous Transylvania.