Netherlands' Queen Beatrix gives farewell speech
Dutch Queen Beatrix and her son Dutch Crown Prince Willem-Alexander pose for photographers as they arrive for a banquet hosted by the Dutch Royal family at the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Monday, April 29, 2013. Queen Beatrix has announced she will relinquish the crown on April 30, 2013, after 33 years of reign, leaving the monarchy to her son Crown Prince Willem-Alexander. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
AMSTERDAM (AP) — The Netherlands' Queen Beatrix thanked her people Monday and urged them to support her son, Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, in a final address before she abdicates and he takes over as king.
Beatrix, 75, is to sign the papers enacting the once-in-a-generation change of royal titles Tuesday morning, the central moment in several days of festivities that are already underway.
Visitors from Sydney, Australia wearing the Dutch national colors pose for photographers outside the Royal Palace in downtown Amsterdam, Netherlands Monday, April 29, 2013. Queen Beatrix has announced she will relinquish the crown on April 30, 2013, after 33 years of reign, leaving the monarchy to her son Crown Prince Willem-Alexander. (AP Photo/Vincent Jannink)
"Now that my oldest son is to take over this fine and responsible job tomorrow, it is my deep wish that the new royal couple will feel themselves supported by your loving trust," the popular monarch said in a nationally televised address. Willem-Alexander's Argentine-born wife Princess Maxima will be queen.
Floral arrangements are made at the entrance of Nieuwe Kerk, adjacent to the Royal Palace, right, in Amsterdam, Netherlands, Monday, April 29, 2013. Netherlands' Queen Beatrix will step down on April 30, 2013, leaving the monarchy to her son Crown Prince Willem Alexander. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
"I am convinced that Willem-Alexander will apply himself with true devotion for everything a good king is obliged to do."
Beatrix is hosting nobility from around Europe and beyond Monday evening for a dinner at the newly renovated national museum, the Rijksmuseum. Guests will dine in front of Rembrandt van Rijn's masterpiece, the Night Watch.