Charles pays tribute to WWII victims on first trip to Germany as King

King Charles and Germany's President paid tribute to World War Two victims in a poignant show of unity as ITV News Royal Editor Chris Ship reports live from Hamburg

King Charles III and The Queen Consort paid tribute to those who lost their lives during World War Two, on the third day of their state visit to Germany, on Friday.

In the ruins of a bombed destroyed Hamburg church, devastated like much of the city by Second World War Allied raids, the King and Germany's president stood motionless after leaving floral tributes.

The King stood shoulder to shoulder with President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in a poignant symbol of reconciliation.The wreath laying at the remains of St. Nikolai Memorial Church was commemorate more than 30,000 people, mostly German civilians, who were killed in Operation Gomorrah, the Allied bombing of Hamburg in July 1943.

Its towering spire was a landmark used by bomber crews as they targeted the city port, but the sacred space has now become a monument against war.

King Charles III and German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier (front) lay a wreath of flowers at St. Nikolai Memorial in Hamburg, Friday, Credit: AP

Charles and Camilla sped into Hamburg on a high-speed train for the third day of his first visit to abroad as King.

The pair originally planned to visit France first, but after violent protests erupted in the country, both governments decided to postpone that part of the trip.

Their new itinerary put the focus on Germany, where Charles has family roots.

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier took the royal couple to Hamburg's Rathaus - the town hall - where they met dignitaries and waved to crowds who were waiting in the rain for a glimpse of The King. They also visited a memorial to the Kindertransport, or children’s transport, a scheme which helped more than 10,000 Jewish children flee to the UK from Nazi Germany 85 years ago.

A boat trip and a farewell reception with music from a Beatles cover band and a sea shanty group, will round off the King's stay in Hamburg.

The couple's visit started on Wednesday, when they landed in Berlin for Charles' first foreign trip as monarch.

King Charles III and Camilla the Queen Consort at Hamburg town hall on Friday. Credit: AP

Why the King and Queen's historic visit to Germany matters to Britain

President Steinmeier greeted them at the Brandenburg Gate with full military honours and later hosted a banquet.

On Thursday, Charles became the first monarch to address the German parliament, telling assembled politicians that "together we must strive for the security, prosperity and well-being that our people deserve.”

He then met with Ukrainian refugees and a German-British military unit, before visiting an organic farm where he tried his hand at making cheese.

Charles' trip is part of a push by the British government to mend frayed ties with Europe after Brexit.

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