King and Queen begin state visit to Italy
The King and Queen together with the Italian Presidential couple, Giorgio and Clio Napolitano, in the Presidential Palace. Photo: AP/Italian Presidency press office, Paolo Giandotti
On Tuesday 24 March, The King and Queen began a four-day state visit to Italy. The King and Queen are joined by Minister for Foreign Affairs, Carl Bildt, and Minister for Higher Education and Research, Lars Leijonborg. The visit has aroused considerable interest in the Italian press and TV.
Following a sightseeing tour past the Roman Forum, the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia, The King and Queen arrived at the welcome ceremony at the Presidential Palace, Palazzo del Quirinale. The Presidential Palace, Palazzo del Quirinale, is situated on the Quirinal Hill, the highest of the seven hills of Rome. The palace was built in 1573 by Pope Gregorius XIII as a papal summer residence.
Italy’s President Giorgio Napolitano welcoming The King before a meeting at the Presidential Palace, Palazzo del Quirinale. Photo: AP Photo/Italian Presidency press office, Paolo Giandotti
On Tuesday afternoon, The King will be visiting the senate, Palazzo Giustiniani, and the Chamber of Deputies, Palazzo Montecitorio, for a meeting with speaker Gianfranco Fini i Sala del Cavaliere.
The Queen will be opening a Swedish-Italian conference on children born deaf and hearing-impaired children and cochlear implants. Afterwards The Queen will be visiting Differenza Donna, a centre providing sheltered housing for abused/vulnerable women.
To end the afternoon, The King and Queen will visit the Swedish Institute at Rome. The evening will be concluded with a state banquet at the Presidential Palace, together with the official delegation.