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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 September 2018

Controversy over burial wishes of Danish queen's consort 

Prince Henrik has announced he won't be buried next tohis wife, Queen Margrethe of Denmark

Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and her husband Prince Henrik on the balcony of the Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen on the occasion of Queen Margrethe's 76th birthday celebration on April 16, 2016. Marie Hald / Reuters
Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and her husband Prince Henrik on the balcony of the Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen on the occasion of Queen Margrethe's 76th birthday celebration on April 16, 2016. Marie Hald / Reuters

The husband of Denmark's Queen Margrethe is causing a stir in one of the world's oldest monarchies.

Prince Henrik has announced he will not be buried next to Margrethe in the Roskilde cathedral where Danish royals have been buried since 1559. She has had a specially designed sarcophagus made for them there.

The 83-year-old prince consort has long complained that he was not made king when Margrethe acceded to the throne in 1972, five years after they married.

The director of communications for the royal house said, "it is no secret that the prince for many years has been unhappy with his role and the title he has been awarded in the Danish monarchy. This discontent has grown more and more in recent years. For the prince, the decision not be buried beside the queen is the natural consequence of not having been treated equally to his spouse - by not having the title and role he has desired."

Prince Henrik was born Coount Henri de Labode de Monpezat in south-west France and was a diplomat when he married Margrethe in 1967

A change in the Danish constitution 19 years earlier had allowed female succession, paving the way for Margrethe to become monarch. But even without that change, Henrik would not have become king.

The palace said Queen Margrethe, 77, has accepted her husband's decision, but would not be changing her own plans for burial..

Prince Henrik retired from public life last year and renounced his title of Prince Consort. Since then he has spent much of his time at his private vineyard in France.

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