Bhutan’s Royal Court has released a new image of Queen Jetsun Pema as she is set to celebrate her 30th birthday tomorrow.
The photo is not from the same set that was released a few days ago which saw the debut of the new Bhutanese royal baby. It was the first time the baby prince had been photographed and the first images of the new family of four. The name of the baby is due to be announced any day. This photo was taken in May in Punakha.
Unlike today’s photograph, those images were taken at Lingkana Palace on 29 May 2020 in commemoration of Jetsun Pema’s birthday.
Ashi (the equivalent of Lady) Jetsun Pema was born on 4 June 1990 to Dhondup Gyaltshen and Sonam Choki as the second of their five children in Thimpu’s Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital. Through her mother, Sonam Choki, she is a distant cousin of her husband as her mother comes from one of the oldest noble families in Bhutan. She has two brothers (Thinlay Norbu and Jigme Namgyel) and two sisters (Serchen Doma and Yeatso Lhamo). Her older sister, Yeatso, is married one of the King’s brothers, Prince Gyaltshab Jigme Dorji Wangchuck.
On 20 May 2011, her engagement to King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck was announced by the King at the opening of Parliament. They married on 13 October 2011 at Punakha Dzong with public celebrations later in Thimphu and Paro. Although polygamy is legal in Bhutan and his father has many wives, King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck vowed never to marry another woman.
Four years later, on 11 November 2015, the couple announced they were expecting their first child. The Queen gave birth to a son – the new crown prince – on 5 February 2016, with the King present, in Lingkana Palace. The baby’s name was announced as Jigme Namgyel Wangchuck on 16 April 2016.
During the National Day celebrations on 17 December 2019, His Majesty announced that Queen Jetsun Pema was expecting their second child, due in the spring of 2020. Their second son was born on 19 March 2020.