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King’s confession on his 80th birthday

10:09 09/06/2014

The entire royal family, with the exception of Queen Fabiola, gathered in Brussels’ BELvue museum on Sunday to celebrate the birthday of the former monarch King Albert II. In honour of his birthday the museum opened its new exhibition dedicated to showcasing the reign and achievements of King Albert II.

Along with his wife Queen Paola and their son, the present monarch, King Philippe and his wife Queen Mathilde, Albert took a tour of the small exhibition which includes interactive touchscreens to view pictures and movie clips of his economic missions, symbolic moments in his life and his family.

On Sunday evening, a TV clip of an extensive interview with King Albert II and Queen Paola, due to be broadcast tonight and tomorrow, saw the former monarch reflect on parenthood and media scrutiny. “Looking at my own children,” he said, “I see they are a lot closer to their children than we were to ours. I don’t think ‘ideal’ parents exist as such. It’s not a job you learn. In addition, the slightest disagreement or any known thing is straight away put out into the public arena. It’s an unbearable situation.” 

Written by Deborah Forsyth