State visit from Tunisia – day 1

From Wednesday 4 November to Friday 6 November, Tunisia's President Béji Caïd Essebsi visited Sweden at the invitation of The King. The main themes for the visit were promoting commerce, information and communications technology (ICT), democracy, decentralisation and combating social exclusion.

President Essebsi and Mrs Saida Caïd Essebsi arrived at Stockholm Arlanda Airport during the morning, where they were received by The Crown Princess and Prince Daniel.

They were welcomed by The King and Queen at the Royal Stables. The King and Queen and the Presidential couple then travelled by cortège, accompanied by escort troops and standard bearers from the Royal Life Guards, to the Royal Palace of Stockholm.

The King welcomes President Essebsi at the Royal Stables. Photo: royalcourt.se

The King welcomes President Essebsi at the Royal Stables. Photo: royalcourt.se

Along the route of the cortège on Norrbro. Photo: royalcourt.se

Along the route of the cortège on Norrbro. Photo: royalcourt.se

The welcoming ceremony was held in the Inner Courtyard. After the national anthems had been played, The King and the President inspected the Guard of Honour. The President then greeted representatives from the Riksdag and the Swedish Government.

During the welcoming ceremony in the Inner Courtyard. Photo: royalcourt.se

During the welcoming ceremony in the Inner Courtyard. Photo: royalcourt.se

Gifts were exchanged in the Grand Guest Apartment, and The Crown Princess Couple and Prince Carl Philip also attended.

The King and Queen then hosted lunch for the Presidential couple at the Royal Palace of Stockholm.

The King and Queen, the Presidential couple, The Crown Princess Couple and Prince Carl Philip during the meeting in the Grand Guest Apartment. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

The King and Queen, the Presidential couple, The Crown Princess Couple and Prince Carl Philip during the meeting in the Grand Guest Apartment. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

During the afternoon, Speaker Urban Ahlin received President Essebsi at the Riksdag building.

The day concluded with The King and Queen's gala dinner for the Presidential couple. The guests were welcomed by The King and Queen and the Presidential couple in the Vita Havet Assembly Rooms. The dinner was then held in Karl XI's Gallery.

The King gave a speech to the President, in which he mentioned the two countries' long relations and the fact that the 2015 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Tunisia's National Dialogue Quartet.

"The choice of laureate recognises the Tunisian people's peaceful efforts for democracy and human rights. In a time which, unfortunately, can be said to be characterised by a greater lack of freedom and increased instability, Tunisia stands out as a country where social conflict is resolved through dialogue and democratic decision-making."

Karl XI's Gallery is ready for the gala dinner. Photo: Alexis Daflos/royalcourt.se

Karl XI's Gallery is ready for the gala dinner. Photo: Alexis Daflos/royalcourt.se

The King accompanied Mrs Saida Caïd Essebsi to the table. Wided Bouchamaoui, who represents one of the organisations in Tunisia's National Dialogue Quartet, which was awarded this year's Nobel Peace Prize, was seated to his left.

The Queen was accompanied to the table by Tunisia's President Béji Caïd Essebsi. Tunisia's Minister of Foreign Affairs Taïeb Baccouche was seated to her right.

The Crown Princess was accompanied to the table by Minister of Communication Technologies and the Digital Economy Noomane Fehri. Tunisia's President Béji Caïd Essebsi was seated to her right.

Prince Daniel accompanied Wided Bouchamaoui to the table. Tunisia's ambassador to Sweden, Fatma Omrani Chargui, was seated to his left.

Prince Carl Philip accompanied Ulla Löfven to the table. Mrs Saida Caïd Essebsi was seated to his left.

The Queen, President Essebsi and The Crown Princess during the gala dinner at the Royal Palace of Stockholm. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

The Queen, President Essebsi and The Crown Princess during the gala dinner at the Royal Palace of Stockholm. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

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Charred and lightly smoked salmon trout with a variation of cauliflower, sour mashed autumn apple and Västervik mustard dressing

Fillet of cod baked in browned butter with ginger-fragranced prawn sauce, caramelised black salsify and dill potato purée

Roasted fillet of reindeer veal with honey-fried pointed cabbage, thyme-fried seasonal mushrooms and game jus flavoured with Madagascar green peppercorns

Cloudberry mousse and sorbet with nougat crisp, cloudberry foam and caramel with cloudberry liqueur

The glassware by Kosta, designed by Sigurd Persson, was a wedding present to The King and Queen in 1976 from the Swedish Government and the Riksdag. The linen, from Klässbol, was a gift from the Riksdag and the Swedish Government to The King to commemorate his 20th jubilee. The pattern was designed by Karin Björquist and consists of a broad wave pattern on the border and large scattered stars reflected around The King and Queen's face-to-face monogram. The stars symbolise the North Star, an ancient symbol for the Swedish monarch. The master weaver was Hans Thomsson. Photo: royalcourt.se

The glassware by Kosta, designed by Sigurd Persson, was a wedding present to The King and Queen in 1976 from the Swedish Government and the Riksdag. The linen, from Klässbol, was a gift from the Riksdag and the Swedish Government to The King to commemorate his 20th jubilee. The pattern was designed by Karin Björquist and consists of a broad wave pattern on the border and large scattered stars reflected around The King and Queen's face-to-face monogram. The stars symbolise the North Star, an ancient symbol for the Swedish monarch. The master weaver was Hans Thomsson. Photo: royalcourt.se

The last state visit from Tunisia took place in 1963, when President Habib Bourguiba visited Sweden at the invitation of King Gustaf VI Adolf. The photograph was taken at Drottningholm Palace. From left: Madame Bourguiba, President Bourguiba, King Gustaf VI Adolf and Queen Louise. Photo: Pressens Bild

President Essebsi was accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs Taïeb Baccouche and Minister of Communication Technologies and the Digital Economy Noomane Fehri. The delegation also included representatives from Tunisian industry and Wided Bouchamaoui, who represents one of the organisations in Tunisia's National Dialogue Quartet, which was awarded this year's Nobel Peace Prizeexternal link, opens in new window.