Regent's Couple Visit to Greenland; July 9-24, 2011
Regent's Couple visit to Greenland: July 10 - 24, 2011
Program for the royal couple's visit to Greenland in July 2011
I wonder how much interest there is in this visit.
Anyway, here is an article with a couple of photos of QMII at Thule Base in North West Greenland. Dronningen indtog Thulebasen - Royale - BT.dk
The visit was somewhat improvised as the Regent Couple were to have visited the NEEM project (*) Saturday and slept in a tent overnight. But due to bad weather that wasn't possible.
Instead the Regent couple went to Thule Airbase (**) Sunday where they had dinner with commander there, Mark E. Allen.
After the dinner they will board the inspection ship/patrol ship (that's her Nato classification) Inspektionsfartøjer af KNUD RASMUSSEN-klassen Ejnar Mikkelsen (***). And they will sail to the northen most village in Greenland, Siorapaluk.
(*) The NEEM project is about obtaining icecore samples from as far back as possible. We are talking 200.000 years, possibly more. The results have been most interesting in helping to determine the climate and climate fluctuations in prehistoric times.
(**) Thule Base used to be an essential part of NORAD, the early warning system protecting North America. Not least in the first half of the Cold War, where the prospect of Soviet bombers flying over the North Pole was a major threat.
(***) Greenland has autonomy but security and military presence is still the responsibility of Denmark. And DK has a fairly considerable military presence in Greenland, not least ships. However the coast guard, which consists of a number of small lightly armed vessels is de facto Greenlandic. They are formally under the command of Greenland Command, but the vessels are manned by Greenlanders. - And they constitute the "Greenland armed forces". Greenlanders, just like Faroese, are not egligable for conscription, like ethnic Danes.
This is slightly off topic, but connected:
The Danish crime novelist Peter Høeg has set his novel ""Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow" in Denmark and in Greenland.
Apparently, there are 49 different words for SNOW....
The Queen Visits Thule
Translated article & Pictures
Billed-Bladet - Dronningen havde en dramatisk tur til Quaanaaq
The Queen had a dramatic trip to Quaanaaq
Margrethe got spontaneous rounds of applause from the inhabitants of the settlement, when she had to get in the ice-cold water in order to visit them.
It became a little more dramatic trip to the little community, Quaanaaq, than the queen had expected. Because of low water the ship, the Majesty is sailing with, Ejnar Mikkelsen, could not reach the coast, so the queen had to a dress in survival suit first off in a rubber dinghy and after that wade the last meters through the water. There stood a large number of Greenlanders, who spontaneously burst into rounds of applause of the brave and energetic queen that absolutely wanted to visit the small settlement. Prince Henrik was not with her, he had decided to stay aboard Ejnar Mikkelsen.
PRESENT FOR PRINCE CHRISTIAN
In Quaanaaq the queen didn't just get presents for herself and prince Henrik. She also got a present for prince Christian. It was the finest pencil case of sealskin, because also in Greenland they know that Christian is to start school after the summer holidays.
News from Sermitsiag:
Dronningen i vandet | Sermitsiaq.AG Nyheder I love her boots in pic 5 :rofl:
Henrik lavede omelet | Sermitsiaq.AG Nyheder
Fest i Siorapaluk | Sermitsiaq.AG Nyheder
Regentparret venter på Pituffik | Sermitsiaq.AG Nyheder
Regentparret er fløjet fra Pituffik | Sermitsiaq.AG Nyheder
The survival suit won't have fazed Mary ..... I remember her taking a course with the Danish military, early on in her "princess" career.
However, Mary has been wearing a survival suit in Greenland. During her first visit there. At some point she and other members of the DRF were in a boat and the sea was very rough.
She later talked about how it was to basically be helpless and entrust her life in the, albeit very competent, hands of the navy personel. That was a novel situation for her and in my interpretation not a pleasant experience. I believe she prefer to at least have some control of what is going on. - Like most of us in fact.
Thanks for the pics and articles.
I understand that a frigate is racing north in order to pick up the Regent Couple. The patrol ship they are using now is very small and in contrast to the frigate, she doesn't have a helicopter, hence QMII having to wade ashore.
Once the Regent Couple is onboard the frigate, Hvidbjørnen = The White Bear, they will sail south and rendevouz with Dannebrog.
Dannebrog's hull is in contrast to the navy ships not reinforced for arctic conditions and she rolls a lot in the sea.
The frigate is incidentally the escort ship for Dannebrog.
ADDED: Perhaps QMII will pay a visit to Hans Island? That should have the Canadians widen their eyes a bit! :eek::tongue:
Bring her on Muhler! Prince William is back on active duty after his visit her so he can always helicopter over to wave the Canadian flag!:lol:
My bet would be on QMII, she's now pretty seasoned when it comes to dogsledes. :wolf:
But should they meet there, they could share a bottle of schnapps/brandy or whatever is left there at present. :cheers:
When looking at those pictures its no surprise that Margrete is so popular and I can easily imagine following Frederik in her footsteps.
A gallery from BT of the Regent couple in Greenland: Regentparret indtager Grønland | www.bt.dk
I'll add a few comments.
Pic #1: Prince Henrik has hitched a ride on an atv. You'll notice that the police officer is an ethnic Dane. Even though there is a considerable number of ethnic Greenlanders in the police force there, that is supplemented by Danes. The police and courts are directly controlled by the Ministry of Justice and as such is independent from the autonomous government of Greenland.
Pic #4: This is how the Regent Couple are supposed to go ashore but if the water is too shallow, it's on with the survival suit and wading ashore instead.
Pic #5: Arriving at Thule Base.
Pic #7: The head of the Greenlandic government, Kuupik Kleist.
Pic #8: QMII gearing up for spending the night in a tent on the ice, but the weather was bad, so that was cancelled.
Pic #9: QMII greeting the captain of the patrolship she is staying on at present. The ship has a crew of 18, so it must be pretty cramped onboard.
The captain is a bit too high up the ranks to normally command a patrolship.
Pic #10: Waiting for the Regent Couple. this village is the northern most inhabited place in the entire realm. - If you go further north you may only encounter hunters, seals, the odd scientist, polar bears and the Sirius Patrol.
Pic #14: Visiting Quaanaaq, a village that is particular dear to Frederik, as he spend a couple of months here with Sirius in 2000. He and Mary visited the village during their first visit to Greenland together. A moving experience for Frederik.
Pic #15: PH didn't trust his legs enough to wade ashore at Quaanaaq with QMII, so he made an omelet onboard the patrolship.
Pic #16: QMII is much more comfortable with children now, than she ever was beforehand.
added: You are right, there is a cache of Canadian whiskey too! The two could indeed raise a glass together!
Alas Canadians, Hans Ø belongs to DK, just like the North Pole...:daneflag2:
At least our two countries can bragg about having a civilized and good-natured border dispute. :cheers:
(Hope you minister enjoyed the schnapps left by the Danes previously).
This is of course about more than a minor border dispute or banter. Interesting things are happening in the Arctic these years.
DK has for many years had a fairly considerable military presence around Greenland, partly due to a dispute with Norway in the 1930's about sovereignty over East Greenland. The case was laid before the then League of Nations and Denmark was close to loosing, because one of the aknowledged ways of asserting your sovereignty is that you have a presence there and that you are able to enforce your sovereignty and your laws in the area. It was the presence of Danish fur hunters in East Greenland, which made the difference.
Fast forward 70 years.
The strait between Greenland and Canada is melting. The traditional North West passage goes through Canadian territory, but there is an alternative route; between Greenland and Canada, north of Canada and Alaska and through the Bering Strait.
That passage is expected to be navigable within the next few decades, as such shipping is expected to increase. - So is shipwrecking, oilspills, heavy fishing and dumping and that means that a presence which can keep an eye on things there and if need be intervene, is becoming a necessity.
Add to that that there is a possibility of drilling for oil there as well with a profitable result and the area becomes even more interesting!
Now, Hans Island/Hans Ø is located smack in the middle of this strait and beforehand no one, but the seals gave a hoot about who this piece of rock belongs to. That changed after 2000.
According to Canadian surveys, Canada had such a limited precense in the arctic that stricktly speaking Canada would have serious problems enforcing sovereignty over Hans Island, while Denmark could.
One of the reasons being that Greenland in Arctic terms is pretty heavily populated and as such the relative distance between Ottawa and Hans Island is greater than between Copenhagen and Hans Ø.
So Canada has been reinforcing it's precense in the artic, as has Denmark, USA and Russia. In the case of Canada and Denmark it has, very civilized, led to an increased co-operation between the two countries. Danish surveillance planes now land in Canada from time to time and the Canadians visit Greenland in return.
You are quite correct that the Canadian government is also taking measures to increase its presence in the Arctic. The recent visit by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge included a very well publicized tour of the North West Territories as well as TRH induction into the Canadian Ranger corps, the paramilitary unit consisting of Canadian Inuit (aboriginals) who patrol the the North.
The Rugged Royals: Prince William and Kate Middleton Conquer the Canadian Wilderness Needless to say, the North is a very large territory, so let's leave this as a civilized agreement to disagree! :whistling::canflag::mountie:
I'll tell you something: I don't care about Hans Island or the North Pole. Denmark is making a claim on both on behalf of Greenland and in a, in my opinion, incredibly naive move the Danish Parliament a few years ago renounced all claims on natural resources in Greenland. - That's great for Greenland but the Danish presence in the Arctic is going to cost the Danish taxpayers a fortune and I ask myself, what do I get in return?
If you want Hans Island and the North Pole, you can have it, because as it is, it's unlikely to benefit me at all.
No, I find what is going on in the Arctic interesting politically and especially the increased Danish Canadian co-operation.
However, of relevance to this forum, it's the increased co-operation between Canada, Denmark and to some degree Norway (*) that is worth keeping an eye on. I can easily imagine a "royal summit" in a decade or two, beteeen the DRF, NRF and BRF in the Artic to cement an agreement there.
- All this as a background to what is going on.
(*) Because the North East Passage is now also evolving into a serious option these years.
You raise a very interesting point indeed! There is a special relationship between Canada's aboriginal peoples and the BRF or 'Crown' considered by many as comparable to that between sovereign nations. There are aboriginals who refuse to travel on Canadian passports, insisting that, as members of Canada's First Nations, they use their own travel documents! Because Canada's North is largely populated by aboriginals, it is a fascinating thought that the new Duke and Duchess might take their status as Canadian Rangers seriously and actually meet their Scandinavian counterparts at some point in a 'circumpolar summit'. However I do not see Queen Elizabeth donning a survival suit and a cool blue toque in the near future, so that your Queen Margrethe is still the Queen of the North, as far as I am concerned!:royalrobes:
added: to make the point even more strongly, in the little clip I appended above, note the gentleman wearing a chequered shirt standing next to TRH. He is Peter McKay, Canadian Minister of Defence (the one who drank your schnapps!)
Here's a nice large gallery from Billed-Bladet, the couple pics are great as always!
** BB: Regentparret i Niaqornat **
Splendid images ! I love it when Margrete wears bright colours, apart from red and white.
Summary of article in Billed Bladet #28, 2011.
Margrethes iskolde dukkert - Margrethe's freezing cold dip.
Written by our reporter on the ice Annelise Weimann.
This covers the ongoing visit until the BB deadline Tuesday noon.
There is no such thing as a shedule in north west Greenland, because that's simply impossible due to the weather!
It all started in the village of Quaanaaq, to where the Regent Couple arrived onboard the patrol ship, Ejnar Mikkelsen.
However even this small ship is too big to moor there, so QMII had to don a survival suit and enter a rubber dinghy. And supported by two sailors she waded the rest of the way to shore. The locals cheered and applauded her.
Prince Henrik, who's back could be better, wisely opted to stay onboard the patrol ship and prepare an omelet for himself.
They had to cancel a night on the ice in a tent, visiting the NEEM project. Then they were supposed to fly to the village/settlement/hamlet (you pick) of Upernavik to start the official part of the visit on Monday. That wasn't possible due to the weather.
However, after no less than 22 years and three previously aborted attempts QMII finally managed to reach the northern most settlement of the realm, Siorapaluk. Despite icebergs en mass they managed to get there by sea.
While in Quaanaaq, QMII was presented to gifts, among them a pencil holder made from sealskin for Christian when he starts in school in about a month from now. (*)
Now, as a curiosum the majority of the press corps is billeted onboard the patrol frigate Hvidbjørnen, which acts as an escort ship for Danneborg. These two ships are both further south. The media has been allocated to wherever there is room, some in the hospital. Our reporter and her photographer are fortunate, they have a cabin of their own in a corridor with the omnious name: Dead Mans Corridor, because there is only one emergency exit. - Sweet dreams! :devil2:
Billed-Bladet - Det er ikke let at følge dronningen
(*) I doubt he'll use it, at least not for some years. That would be a pity.
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