Yesterday, the Danish Royal Family attended the official opening of the Danish Parliament at Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen. Queen Margrethe, Crown Prince Frederik, Crown Princess Mary, and Princess Benedikte were received by official members of the Parliament at noon when the first session of the parliamentary year began. The opening of the Parliament takes place each year on the first Tuesday of October.
This year, Prince Joachim and Princess Marie didn’t attend the ceremony. Indeed, the couple is now living in Paris, France as Prince Joachim is currently undertaking a year-long high-level military training at the Centre des Hautes Etudes Militaires and at the Institut des Hautes Etudes de Defense Nationale. The day before, Prince Joachim and Princess Marie represented Queen Margrethe at the state funeral of former French President Jacques Chirac in Paris.
The Danish Royal Family has a passive role in the annual ceremony. The Queen doesn’t make a speech during the opening, but she is present as a symbol during the first session. Before the ceremony, the government and the members of parliament attend a service that is not attended by the Royal Family. There is no parliamentary debate during the first session, but the Prime Minister makes a speech in front of the members of the parliament.
This session was the first for Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen – the youngest head of government in Denmark ever – and she said that she would aim to increase trust across all aspects of Danish life: “We have built a society on trust. With obligations. With rights. In that order. I pay my tax and trust you will pay yours. I pay for your visit to the doctor, trusting that you will pay for mine. We have that solidarity.”
Queen Margrethe first attended the Opening of Parliament in 1958 when she turned 18. Crown Prince Frederik and Prince Joachim also first attended after their 18th birthdays.