[Article update January 11 at 16:20 with details of a meeting between Rishi Sunak and Emmanuel Macron.]
King Charles’ first state visit as monarch will reportedly be to Paris and will take place in March, French media sources report.
Read more: King Charles could travel to France for first state visit as monarch
A French government source told Le Parisien: “This is an extremely powerful symbol as it will be the first official visit of Charles III.
“This will happen while the King is still uncrowned, which reflects that France is a priority for him.” Charles III will be crowned on May 6, 2023.
“This visit is an opportunity to show the ancient attachment between his country and ours, which goes beyond Brexit, and to continue in a family tradition, as Elizabeth II was a Francophile and spoke French,” an MP from the majority group in Parliament added.
Read more: Queen won hearts in France with first speech in French at 22
When the Queen died in September, President Emmanuel Macron invited King Charles to the Élysée Palace “when it suits him”. At the late monarch’s funeral, Mr Macron also gave the King a photo album commemorating the Queen’s 1957 visit to Versailles.
The King’s visit would take place in the week of March 27, Le Parisien reports, with a state dinner at the Élysée and a meeting with Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo planned. A visit schedule would also be prepared for Brigitte Macron and the Queen Consort Camilla.
Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the reported plans when contacted by The Connexion.
It was also reported that the visit will be preceded by a Franco-British summit between government ministers, which would involve discussions on key issues including Channel crossings, fishing, Ukraine and UK-EU relations. Indeed, today, the British Embassy in Paris announced that Prime Minister Rishi Sunak would meet with Mr Macron on March 10 in the first meeting of its kind since 2018.
The Embassy stated that this would be "an opportunity for the leaders to deepen cooperation between the UK and France in a huge range of areas including security, migration, climate and energy, the economy, youth and shared foreign policy goals."
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