Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Guillaume and Stéphanie at the European Court of Justice

Today at 3:30, Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie were in Kirchberg to attend the swearing in of the President of the European Commission, as well as new Members of the College of Commissioners. The new president is Luxembourg native Jean-Claude Juncker who succeeds Jose Manuel Barroso. Juncker is also the former prime minister of Luxembourg, having served in that position from 1995 to 2013. Between 1989 and 2005, he also served as Luxembourg's Minister for Finances. Juncker holds the unique honor of being one of the longest-serving elected leaders in the world.

Juncker's career in politics began around 1980, after he completed a law degree at the University of Strasbourg. He was elected Parliamentary Secretary in Luxembourg, and he was then elected to the Chamber of Deputies in 1984. In this role, he was appointed to Prime Minister Jacques Santer's Cabinet as the Minister of Labour.

Despite being injured in an auto accident in 1989, and suffering from a brief coma, Juncker was able to return to politics and be elected once again to the Chamber of Deputies. That same year, he was given the role of Minister for Finances, and from here he rose to be Prime Minister of Luxembourg. Juncker's career has reflected a strong respect for the European Union and its goals, and he was at one time the chair of the Council of Economic and Financial Affairs. Between 2005 and 2013, Juncker served as the first President of the Eurogroup.

Prime Minister Xavier Bettel was also there with the Hereditary Grand Ducal couple.

A short video of the event may be found here and pictures at the cour.

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