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Crown Prince Haakon plays rugby during visit to Fiji

Crown Prince Haakon of Norway has continued his visit to Fiji with a varied agenda on Tuesday. The first event on the program was a taste of Fiji’s national sport, rugby. The Crown Prince participated in rugby training together with local players and Norway’s Development Minister, Dag-Inge Ulstein.

After the workout, Crown Prince Haakon went to the University of the South Pacific. The university has its headquartered in Fiji and campuses in twelve Pacific countries. The Crown Prince spoke to the students about Norway’s relationship with the sea and why he has faith in the future. Crown Prince Haakon also had the opportunity to meet three Norwegians who study here and hear about how it is to be a Norwegian student in Fiji.

The Crown Prince then had a boat-tour on a modern version of the traditional Fiji-boat “Drua”. The special boat is built in line with old construction practice, but with modern materials and green technology, and is powered by solar cells in addition to sails. The boat has been around the earth twice and is used to promote sustainable, carbonless transport.

Following the special boat-trip Crown Prince Haakon attended a ceremony for the UN-troops from Fiji. Today, 680 soldiers from Fiji serve in the UN’s forces. Norwegian UN soldiers have served with soldiers from Fiji during the war in Lebanon. Crown Prince Haakon greeted some of Fiji’s veterans before he laid a wreath at the National War Memorial.

Crown Prince Haakon talks to UN veterans from Fiji who served with Norwegian forces in Lebanon. Photo: Sven Gj. Gjeruldsen / The Royal Court / Det Kongelige Hoff.

In the afternoon, Crown Prince Haakon visited the village of Daku to conclude his two-day long Fiji-visit. Crown Prince Haakon and Dag-Inge Ulstein met residents of the village who every day meet the challenges that arise from climate change and flooding. On Wednesday, the Crown Prince will arrive in Samoa to conclude his trip to the Pacific region.

Crown Prince Haakon of Norway is currently visiting the nations of Tonga, Fiji and Samoa. The visit will run from 5 April to 11 April. The purpose of the visit is to strengthen partnerships with small island states in the South Pacific for the promotion of common interests including seas and climate, peace and security. Royal Central will follow the visit closely and bring you the latest news from Crown Prince Haakon’s tour.

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written five books on historical subjects and more than 700 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.