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King Harald on 2023: “We need each other”

King Harald addressed Norwegians on New Year’s Eve and spoke of working together, democracy and the future. The main point of his speech was that people need one another.

The King began his speech by alluding to the war in Ukraine and the general state of the world: “We humans need to know that we can do something to make life as good as possible – both for ourselves and for people we love. This is especially important in troubled times when we are faced with challenges that are difficult to do something for each and every one of us. One can easily feel powerless.”

His Majesty called on people to “look up to gain perspective” and added that “we need each other.”

King Harald mentioned the message of World Mental Health Day in 2022 and how it should be used and carried into 2023: “We need each other – look up! I hope we can also carry that with us into the new year.”

He said he recognised that everyone lives differently; he said that at the end of 2022, people had put a lot of drama behind them.

With that, he directly addressed the Russian invasion of Ukraine: “With Russia’s brutal warfare in Ukraine, a new seriousness has come over our part of the world. Many are worried, both here in Norway and in our European community. At the same time, we see how Norwegians contribute both through humanitarian work and, in other ways, to help people in need. This makes me both proud and happy.”

The King spoke of the refugees in Norway and the welcome Norwegians gave them.

His Majesty, who grew up during World War II, mentioned that many today grew up privileged without knowing war and extreme poverty. He said people assumed things would stay the same but that those things cannot be taken for granted.

King Harald also expressed his concern for the climate, saying that this is a global issue.

The King directly spoke to young people on New Year’s Eve: “Remember that each one of you has something completely unique and valuable that is only yours, that is only you. Something nice that you can use for the good of yourself and those around you.”

He let them know that feeling sick, in pain, and worried are all normal feelings, and with everything going on in the world, these feelings are natural. In grandfatherly type advice, he said: “We fall, and we rise. Again and again. But we rarely do it alone. We need each other.”

His Majesty spoke of Norway’s democracy and the trust it provides. He stressed the importance of talking and listening to one another.

Finally, he asked everyone to contribute and help each other.

About author

Brittani is from Tennessee, USA. She is a political scientist and historian after graduating with a degree in the topics from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in December 2014. She also holds a master's degree from Northeastern University. She enjoys reading and researching all things regarding the royals of the world. She's been researching, reading, and writing on royalty for over a decade. She became Europe Editor in October 2016, and then Deputy Editor in January 2019, and has been featured on several podcasts, radio shows, news broadcasts and websites including Global News Canada, ABC News Australia, WION India and BBC World News.