Statement of Prime Minister Xavier Bettel on the occasion of the death of HRH Grand Duke Jean

Prime Minister Xavier Bettel’s statement on the occasion of the death of HRH Grand Duke Jean.

"It is my sad duty to inform you that Grand Duke Jean has passed away last night at 0.25 a.m., at the age of 98. It is a difficult moment for us all, for our country, for the people of Luxembourg and all the citizens of the Grand Duchy. First and foremost, however, this is a difficult time for the grand ducal family, for Grand Duke Henri and the Grand Duchess, for Grand Duke Jean’s children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren as well as for all the people close to him.

On behalf of the government and the country, I would like to express my deepest condolences to the family, and wish them courage during this difficult time.

Grand Duke Jean was, and remains, a symbol of our country and of our shared history. He stands for conscientiousness, loyalty towards the country, love and unity with the people. Grand Duke Jean served as role model for all of us and, through his dedicated service, has left his mark forever.

He was born on 5 January 1921 at Berg Castle and assumed the title of Hereditary Grand Duke of Luxembourg on the day of his eighteenth birthday. As young prince, he stood up for our values and beliefs during World War II, and took part in the Normandy landings as Irish Guard in June 1944. Three months later, he was present at the liberation of the capital. He helped to reconstruct the country after the war, and to restore stability.

Grand Duke Jean fought for our freedom, our independence and the unity of our country, and we will always be grateful and have the utmost respect for this commitment.

He was the head of state of Luxembourg between 1964 and 2000. During these 36 years, Grand Duke Jean accompanied major stages in the history of our country and led us through good and less good times. His devotion towards nature and his role as Chief Scout are well-known, his respect for man and animal, his love and commitment for the weak in society will remain unforgotten.

I summoned the Government Council for 10.00 a.m. today in order to discuss the course of the next few days. At noon, I will meet the Grand Duke at Berg Castle. The state funeral will take place on Saturday, 4 May, at 11.00 a.m. at the Cathedral.

A family man has left us today. A great statesman, a hero, a role model – and an incredibly sweet and kind-hearted person."

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