German city of Dusseldorf gives a golden welcome to Prince Harry & Meghan Markle

Harry and Meghan flew into the historic Rhine city of Dusseldorf in Germany today, with Harry there to launch the countdown to the 2023 Invictus Games that will be hosted there between September 9th and 16th next year. The weather gods delivered glorious sunshine for the day that saw the couple visit the city's Rathaus (Town Hall) where Prince Harry unveiled a sign with the words "A Home for Respect" the motto for the Dusseldorf Games that was chosen by Harry. 

Kind thoughts for Meghan Markle

Meghan and Harry were invited into the Town Hall where they met town dignitaries and members of the military, before being asked to sign the City's Golden (visitors) Book. Harry thanked the city and the Bundeswehr (German military) for their willingness to host the Invictus Games 2023.

Dusseldorf literally rolled out a red carpet for the couple's visit to the town square. After signing the visitors book, Meghan and Harry took time to meet with some of the hundreds of residents who had waited patiently in the square to catch a glimpse of the couple. Meghan and Harry shook hands, petted dogs, chatted with families and their children, and allowed people to take selfies with them.

After this engagement, Harry and Meghan took a short boat trip across the River Rhine and were taken to look at a venue for the Games, the Düsseldorf football stadium. Whilst there, Prince Harry gave a further speech at a pre-planned press event. Harry thanked Mayor Keller for the nice welcome in Düsseldorf, saying:  "We experienced the lively atmosphere and the many friendly people here. I have a good feeling that the motto 'A home for respect' is really being brought to life here." 

Harry went on to explain why he chose the motto: "I firmly believe that showing respect and appreciation is as important as getting respect and appreciation. This is the spirit we bring to Düsseldorf - for those who have risked their lives by protecting us and their country." Harry explained that people who serve in the military for their countries are often unseen, adding that he is pleased he can provide an event where injured servicemen, servicewomen and veterans get a chance to be seen and appreciated. 

One of the stars of the day was a service dog called Loki, who wearing its Invictus Games 2023 bandana, snuggled up close to Harry's legs and received lots of pats from dog loving Harry and Meghan.

Around 500 participants from 21 countries are expected to attend the sports competition for soldiers injured in action in the Düsseldorf football stadium next year. 

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