The King and Queen host lunch in connection with the session of the Nordic Council in Sweden

Back row, from left: Norway's speaker Tone Wilhelmsen Trøen, Åland's speaker Gun-Mari Lindholm, Sweden's speaker Andreas Norlén, Finland's speaker Matti Vanhanen, Iceland's speaker Steingrímur J. Sigfússon and Denmark's speaker Henrik Dam Kristensen. Front row, from left: President of the Nordic Council Hans Wallmark, Faroese Minister of Health and Minister of Nordic Cooperation Kaj Leo Holm Johannesen, Finland's Prime Minister Antti Rinne, Denmark's Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, The King and Queen, Iceland's Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir, Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, Vice-President of the Nordic Council Gunilla Carlsson and Deputy Head of the Government of the Åland Islands Camilla Gunell.

Back row, from left: Norway's speaker Tone Wilhelmsen Trøen, Åland's speaker Gun-Mari Lindholm, Sweden's speaker Andreas Norlén, Finland's speaker Matti Vanhanen, Iceland's speaker Steingrímur J. Sigfússon and Denmark's speaker Henrik Dam Kristensen. Front row, from left: President of the Nordic Council Hans Wallmark, Faroese Minister of Health and Minister of Nordic Cooperation Kaj Leo Holm Johannesen, Finland's Prime Minister Antti Rinne, Denmark's Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, The King and Queen, Iceland's Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir, Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, Vice-President of the Nordic Council Gunilla Carlsson and Deputy Head of the Government of the Åland Islands Camilla Gunell. Photo: Sara Friberg/The Royal Court of Sweden

On Tuesday 29 October, The King and Queen hosted lunch for Nordic prime ministers, speakers and other politicians in connection with the session of the Nordic Council in Sweden.

The Nordic Council is the official parliamentary body for Nordic cooperation, and was established in 1952. The Council has 87 elected members, from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, as well as the autonomous regions of the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland. The members meet once a year for a session in which the Nordic nations' governments also participate.

This year marked the 71st session of the Nordic Council, and the meeting was held in Stockholm from 29 to 31 October. This year's agenda included the climate, sustainability and young people's involvement.

Lunch at the Royal Palace

The Nordic speakers, prime minister, ministers for cooperation, ambassadors in Stockholm and representatives of the Nordic Council were invited to lunch at the Royal Palace.

The Queen during the lunch at the Royal Palace.

The Queen during the lunch at the Royal Palace. Photo: Sara Friberg/The Royal Court of Sweden

During the lunch, The King gave a speech in which he said:

"You are all prominent representatives of your countries and their parliaments. However, you also represent something even greater: the Nordic community and Nordic cooperation.

"This is something that we all have good reason to defend. Many of the social challenges that we face cross national borders. We must therefore also be prepared to work across borders."

Flags at Norrbro and the Royal Palace to mark the 71st session of the Nordic Council.

Flags at Norrbro and the Royal Palace to mark the 71st session of the Nordic Council. Photo: Sara Friberg/The Royal Court of Sweden