How the German media have reacted to King Charles’s Berlin visit
German media outlets have been reacting to King Charles III becoming the first British monarch to address the German Parliament on Thursday.
Alternating between German and English, the King paid tribute to the deep historical bonds and longstanding ties between the two nations.
He said it was a “great honour” to be addressing the Parliament known as the Bundestag. He added that he was proud to be in Berlin to “renew the special bond of friendship between our two countries”.
The King has been welcomed positively by the German press, appearing on numerous newspaper front pages.
“A King in Berlin”, read the March 30 front page of Munich-based daily newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, accompanied by a picture of Charles laughing as he greeted crowds in the capital.
Another front page from Rheinische Post, a major regional daily newspaper, reads “Royal Fever”, alongside a picture of the King and Queen Consort, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his wife Elke Büdenbender.
Newspapers such as the Berliner Zeitung and Süddeutsche Zeitung even published helpful guides on royal protocol in case their readers met the King and Queen.
The tips included how to curtsy properly and how to correctly pronounce the word “Ma’am”, which the papers said should rhyme with “jam” and “lamb”.
Media outlets have drawn a historical comparison between the late Queen Elizabeth II’s first visit to West Germany in 1965 and her son’s this week.
“More than half a century ago, Elizabeth II heralded the beginning of German-British reconciliation,” public broadcaster ARD said.
“When Charles III arrives for his first stay in another state as monarch, then the historical bond between Germany and Britain is once again at the centre of the royal visit, but in a different way — as rapprochement after the estrangement that happened during these long years following Brexit.”
Speaking in Berlin, the King said the friendship between the UK and Germany “meant so much to my beloved mother,” who spoke often of her visits to the country.
He also discussed the war in Ukraine and praised the countries’ support of Kyiv.
“Countless lives have been destroyed; freedom and human dignity have been trampled in the most brutal way. The security of Europe has been threatened, together with our democratic values,” he said.
“Even as we abhor the appalling scenes of destruction, we can take heart from our unity — in defence of Ukraine, of peace and freedom.
“In the long and remarkable story of our two countries, there are many chapters yet unwritten. Let us fill these with the restless pursuit of a better tomorrow. The legacy of our past, and the great promise of our future, demand nothing less,” he concluded, before receiving a standing ovation which lasted nearly two minutes.
The royal couple plan to go to Hamburg on Friday. They will visit the Kindertransport memorial for Jewish children who fled from Germany to Britain during the Third Reich, and attend a green energy event before returning to the UK.
The trip has been partly overshadowed by the postponement of the French leg of the European tour. This was shelved by President Emmanuel Macron last Friday after violent nationwide protests against the French leader’s retirement age reforms.