Wednesday 30 November 2022

Amalia held outdoor party to celebrate her birthday, despite Covid rules

Huis den Bosch, where the outdoor birthday party was held. Photo: RVD – Freek van den Bergh

Princess Amalia held a party to celebrate her 18th birthday last week even though the government has urged people to invite no more than four guests to their home because of coronavirus.

According to the Telegraaf, there were around 100 guests at the party, held in the garden of Huis ten Bosch, but the state information service RVD said 21 people had been invited and not all turned up.

Prime minister Mark Rutte told parliament in a briefing that the party had taken place. ‘Amalia turned 18 last week, an important moment in her life,’ he said. ‘On Saturday, a last minute party was organised in the grounds behind the palace.’

Rutte said everyone attending had been vaccinated and was asked to take a coronavirus test before coming.

The family was convinced that by holding the party outside with all the precautions, it had been organised in a responsible way,’ Rutte said in his letter to MPs. Nevertheless, he said, ‘the king has told me that with hindsight, it was not really right to organise this’.

‘I consider this to be a sensible reaction,’ Rutte said.

Earlier problems

It is not the first time the royal family has been caught breaking the coronavirus regulations. In June Willem-Alexander was told off by ministers for flouting the rules during a meeting with football fans when he was seen shaking hands and disregarding social distancing.

In October 2020 he and his family travelled to Greece on holiday at a time when foreign travel was not recommended. And in August last year, again in Greece, he and queen Máxima were photographed standing next to a local shopkeeper.

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