By Anita Tai.

Queen Margrethe II is standing by her decision to relinquish the royal titles of Prince Joachim’s children.

In a new statement from the Danish monarch, she admitted she “underestimated” the reaction her family would have to the decision.

“In recent days, there have been strong reactions to my decision about the future use of titles for Prince Joachim’s four children. That affects me, of course,” she began her statement.

“My decision has been a long time coming. With my 50 years on the throne, it is natural both to look back and to look ahead,” she continued. “It is my duty and my desire as Queen to ensure that the monarchy always shapes itself in keeping with the times. Sometimes, this means that difficult decisions must be made, and it will always be difficult to find the right moment.”

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She went on to explain the responsibilities that come with holding a royal title and that she did not make the decision without due consideration.

“Holding a royal title involves a number of commitments and duties that, in the future, will lie with fewer members of the royal family. This adjustment, which I view as a necessary future-proofing of the monarchy, I want to take in my own time,” said the queen.

Queen Margrethe shocked the world by announcing the four children of Prince Joachim, Nikolai, 23, Felix, 20, and Henrik, 13, and daughter Athena, 10, would lose their royal titles of Prince and Princess next year.

Her son was equally blindsided by the news, revealing he was only given five days notice before the announcement.

“I was given five days’ notice,” he said previously. “In May, I was presented with a plan, which basically stated that when the children each turned 25, it would happen.”

Reflecting on the reaction to the news, the queen apologized for the way it affected her family.

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“I have made my decision as Queen, mother and grandmother, but, as a mother and grandmother, I have underestimated the extent to which much my younger son and his family feel affected. That makes a big impression, and for that I am sorry,” she said.

She concluded, “No one should be in doubt that my children, daughters-in-law and grandchildren are my great joy and pride. I now hope that we as a family can find the peace to find our way through this situation.”

It was noted in the original announcement of the change in titles that the decision was similar to “adjustments” from other royal houses in recent years.


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Ellen Bullock