Prince Philip dies. Polish embassy extends condolences to Royal Family

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TVN24 News in English, PAP, Reuters

Prince Philip, Queen Elizabeth's husband who helped modernise the monarchy and steer the British royal family through repeated crises during seven decades of service, died on Friday at Windsor Castle. He was 99. Polish Embassy in London extended condolences to the Royal Family.

"We are very sad to hear of the death of His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. We extend our deepest sympathies to the Royal Family" - the Polish Embassy in London said in a tweet.

"HRH had a strong connection to Poland, visiting, inaugurating and taking part in the 1975 European Championship in Horse Riding in Sopot" - the embassy added in another tweet.

The Duke of Edinburgh, as he was officially known, had been by his wife's side throughout her 69-year reign, the longest in British history. During that time he earned a reputation for a tough, no-nonsense attitude and a propensity for occasional gaffes. "It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh," the palace said in a statement. "His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle. Further announcements will be made in due course. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss." Flags at Buckingham Palace and at government buildings across Britain were lowered to half-mast and within an hour of the announcement the public began to lay flowers outside Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace. The royal family's website was also shut down, replaced by a photo of Philip and the announcement of his death.

A Greek prince, Philip married Elizabeth in 1947. He went on to play a key role helping the monarchy to adapt to a changing world in the post-World War Two period, and behind the walls of Buckingham Palace was the one key figure the queen could trust and turn to, knowing he could tell her exactly what he thought. "He has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years," Elizabeth, 94, said in a rare personal tribute to Philip in a speech marking their 50th wedding anniversary in 1997. "I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim, or we shall ever know." No details about his funeral have been disclosed, but ceremonies are likely to eschew the grand displays of pomp that often follow royal deaths. That would reflect Philip's well-known aversion to making a fuss, while COVID rules also dictate that only 30 people are currently allowed to attend funerals in England. Philip spent four weeks in hospital earlier this year for treatment for an infection and to have a heart procedure, but returned to Windsor in early March. He died just two months before his 100th birthday.

The prince's charm and disinclination to tolerate those he regarded as foolish or sycophantic earned him respect from some Britons. But to others, his sometimes brusque demeanour made him appear rude and aloof. He was a delight to newspaper editors keen to pick up on any stray remark at official events. The former naval officer, who served in the Royal Navy during the war and was mentioned in dispatches for bravery, admitted he found it hard to give up the military career he loved and to take on the job as the monarch's consort, for which there was no clear-cut constitutional role. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Philip had helped to steer the royal family and the monarchy so that it remained "indisputably vital to the balance and happiness of our national life". "It is to Her Majesty, and her family, that our nation’s thoughts must turn today," Johnson said. "Because they have lost not just a much-loved and highly respected public figure, but a devoted husband and a proud and loving father, grandfather and, in recent years, great-grandfather."

Autor:gf

Źródło: TVN24 News in English, PAP, Reuters

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