In his current position as Regent, Crown Prince Haakon has led Norway in the commemorations for Armed Forces Remembrance Day, for those who lost their lives while serving the country.
On Sunday, 5th November, the Crown Prince Regent travelled to Akershus Fortress in Oslo, where the National Veterans Monument is located. He was welcomed by Brigadier Arne Opperud, the commander of the Fortress and Chief of Defence Eirik Kristoffersen.
The ceremony, which also saw the presence of family members and friends of those who lost their lives while on duty, was opened by a memorial speech by the Defence Chief, who then invited the Crown Prince Regent to lay a wreath at the feet of the monument.
Crown Prince Haakon subsequently stepped forward, between two flags standing at attention carried by two members of the King’s Guard, and laid down the wreath, straightening the red and blue ribbons.
He then stopped for a moment of reflection in front of the plaque that commemorates the service personnel who lost their lives in international operations before moving to Akershus Castle Church, where a memorial service was held. In the service, there were speeches by Brigadier Knut Espen Høidal, the field provost, and Bjørn Arild Gram, the Minister of Defence. Crown Prince Haakon lit a candle, a gesture that preceded the traditional minute of silence.
Norway celebrates Armed Forces Remembrance Day on the first Sunday of November every single year. Since its inauguration by King Harald in 2021, the commemorations are held at the National Veterans Monument, which consists of a bronze tablet with an engraving of all the names of Norwegians who have fallen in international service. Next to it, a perpetual flame symbolises the eternal sacrifice made by all those who gave up their lives in order to serve and protect the country.