Charles gives touching nod to Philip during Greece visit ‘land of my father’s birth’


PRINCE CHARLES described Greece as “the land of my grandfather” at the beginning of a two-day trip with the Duchess of Cornwall held to celebrate the nation’s bicentenary.

However, this has sparked controversy on social media following the announcement Britons could be fined £5,000 for taking a foreign holiday.

One Twitter user claimed it is “one rule for them, one rule for us” whilst another condemned the trip as a “carbon-rich fuelled jolly”.

Charles and Camilla will later lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Athens’ Syntagma Square.

Before returning to the UK they will also watch a Greek military independence day parade.


Prince Charles speaking at the banquet in Athens (Image: GETTY)


Charles praised Greece as the land of his grandfather (Image: GETTY)

The couple has been asked to make the trip by the British Government, following an invitation from Greek prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

It comes amidst diplomatic tension between Britain and Greece over the Elgin Marbles, which are currently housed in the British Museum.

During an interview with the Greek Ta Nea newspaper published earlier this month, Boris Johnson rejected calls for the sculptures to be returned to Greece.

He commented: “I understand the strong feelings of the Greek people, and indeed prime minister Mitsotakis, on the issue.


Charles and Camilla arriving at the reception (Image: GETTY)


Charles and Camilla pictured leaving their aircraft (Image: GETTY)

“But the UK Government has a firm longstanding position on the sculptures, which is that they were legally acquired by Lord Elgin under the appropriate laws of the time and have been legally owned by the British Museum’s trustees since their acquisition.”

Lina Mendoni, the Greek culture minister, has previously referred to Lord Elgin as a “serial thief”.

In a statement, she said: “For Greece, the British Museum does not have legitimate ownership or possession of the Sculptures.”

The Greek government had been hoping to have the sculptures moved to Athens to mark the 200th anniversary of Greek independence this year.


The royal visit has sparked controversy on social media (Image: GETTY)


Charles and Camilla will attend a reception at the National Gallery of Greece (Image: GETTY)


The royal couple’s trip has been deemed “essential” (Image: GETTY)

Britain played a significant role in ensuring Greek independence allying with French and Russian forces to defeat an Ottoman fleet at the Battle of Navarino.

However, Charles and Camilla’s visit to Greece has sparked controversy on social media following the Government’s holiday ban.

One Twitter user posted: “I would have thought any visits official or otherwise are not a good idea during a pandemic people are still dying around the world.”


Prince Charles is next in line to the throne (Image: EXPRESS )

Another blasted: “This is not essential, it is a jolly. He could have said a few words on zoom. This is exactly why the British are turning against the monarchy. One rule for them, one rule for us.”

A third added: “Another carbon-rich fuelled jolly. Oh, the good life.”

However other social media users defended the trip and argued it will benefit the whole nation.


The Elgin Marbles pictured in the British Museum (Image: GETTY)

One tweeted: “They will fly the flag for us, at a time we need everyone pulling in the same direction. Team UK.”

A second commented: “Some can’t cope with good news and only see the negative.

“Hesitated when I saw the headline, wonderful news and what a boost for Prince Philip and Her Majesty.”


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