Berlin (dpa) – Dutch King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima arrived in Berlin on Monday for a state visit. The royal couple landed at Berlin airport in the morning on a government plane. They were greeted with 21 pistol salutes. The couple plans to stay in Berlin for three days. The program includes political talks, with Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), among others. State guests will also visit several cultural and scientific institutions.
Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier is scheduled to receive guests at Bellevue Palace on Monday at lunchtime. In the afternoon, the Mayor of Berlin, Michael Müller (SPD), will accompany the kings to the Brandenburg Gate. They will then sign the city’s Gold Book at Berlin City Hall.
This is the king’s first state visit to Germany since he took office in 2013, although he has already visited all German federal states since 2013. The official state visit scheduled for 2020 has been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Therefore, the usual direct contact with interested fans and spectators with handshakes and photos on the barriers is not planned this time. King Willem-Alexander has close ties to Germany through his father, German Prince Claus von Amsberg, and speaks German fluently.
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