Copenhagen [Denmark], October 5 (ANI): Danish Queen Margrethe II on Tuesday (local time) apologized for stripping four of her eight grandchildren of their royal titles.
The queen said that she was 'sorry' for stripping her grandchildren of royal titles, however, she is not changing her mind about the move, reported CNN.
The 82-year-old monarch announced in late September that the children of her younger son, Prince Joachim, will no longer be known as prince and princess from next year.
Instead, they will only be able to use their titles of counts and countess of Monpezat and will be addressed as excellencies, as their HRH titles will be "discontinued," according to the royal household.
Helle von Wildenrath Lovgreen, press secretary to Countess Alexandra, the former wife of Prince Joachim, told CNN that Joachim and his children were "sad" and "shocked" by the decision, which Queen Margrethe views "as a necessary future-proofing of the monarchy," according to a statement from the Queen.
"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," the monarch said in the 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. 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," she added.
The Queen said she made the "adjustment" to allow the junior royals to lead more normal lives, while following a similar decision by other royal families to slim down the monarchy.
"Holding a royal title involves a number of commitments and duties that, in the future, will lie with fewer members of the royal family," she said.
Crown Prince Frederik, the Queen's older son, is first in line to the throne. His oldest child, Prince Christian, is second in line. All four of Frederik's children retain their titles.
His younger brother, Joachim, lives in Paris with his wife, Princess Marie, and their two children, Henrik, 13, and Athena, 10. The prince also has two older sons, Nikolai, 23, and Felix, 20, from his first marriage to Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg. While Joachim's children will lose their royal titles, they will maintain their places in the order of succession.
The monarch said, "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 added, "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."
Notably, after the death of the UK's longest-serving monarch Queen Elizabeth II, Denmark's Queen Margrethe II is now Europe's longest-serving monarch.
The 82-year-old has been serving the throne in Denmark for 50 years. She became a monarch in 1972 at the age of 31 after the death of her father Frederik IX.
Around the time of her ascension to the throne, not many favoured the decision. However, she played a crucial role in Denmark's modernisation and development.
Born in 1940 in Copenhagen, she was the eldest of three sisters. At the time of her birth, women didn't have the right to the reins of monarchy and crown.
She completed her 50 years as a monarch in January this year but celebrations were postponed until this weekend due to COVID-19. (ANI)