HSH Prince Albert II looked back at an eventful and memorable 2023 while addressing the people of his Principality in the official New Year’s message, recorded days before Christmas alongside Princess Charlene and broadcast at 19:00 on Sunday, December 31.

“Whether on the world stage or in our personal lives, the year will have brought its share of happiness, but also trials, tribulations, and tragedies,” the sovereign said in the video, which was helpfully subtitled in English.

“The Princess and I want to express our full support, and our deepest compassion and affection for all those affected by bereavement, suffering, illness and loneliness,” Prince Albert continued, adding that “these are difficult times, and their consequences are not yet clear to see. Our country has been spared many of the upheavals affecting the world. So we have a shared duty to acknowledge our good fortune, and an ambition too, to remain united by protecting our institutional model, our social and economic achievements.”

“We must also show our gratitude for these advantages by working together to pass on what we have inherited to future generations.”

Prince Albert dubbed 2023 as a “year of celebrations” as it marked what would have been Prince Rainier III’s 100th birthday, as well as being the 30 year anniversary of Monaco joining the United Nations.

“Our unity and uniqueness are our shield against the problems that today beset so many of our Western societies, and I consider it my wholehearted duty to ensure that our community remains cohesive and prosperous. History has too often shown how fragile nations can be, and so in an increasingly complex and unstable world, it is vital that we stay the course.”

The sovereign ended his message on a positive note, “We cannot predict the future, but we can prepare for it. We may not foresee it, but we must create it. The year ahead heralds many challenges, but holds rich promise. We must continue to mobilize our efforts and devote all our energy to the cause of peace, mutual acceptance, and solidarity.”

The full New Year’s message can be viewed here.

Featured image courtesy of Eric Mathon/Princely palace