Prince of Wales pays tribute to fallen soldiers in Poland

The Prince of Wales has echoed his late grandmother the Queen by laying a wreath at a monument dedicated to soldiers in Poland.

William, on the second day of his surprise trip to the country, placed down the wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Warsaw on Thursday morning.

Queen Elizabeth II and the late Duke of Edinburgh did the same during their state visit to Poland in 1996.

William was greeted by a guard of honour and carried the assortment of flowers to the monument, spending around 10 minutes there before leaving.

Prince of Wales visit to Poland
The wreath laid by the Prince of Wales (Yui Mok/PA)

On the wreath was a note reading: “In memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice”.

Passers-by waved to William before he was driven off.

The prince will later visit the Hala Koszyki food hall to hear from those who have left Ukraine after Russia’s invasion last year and is set to meet Polish President Andrzej Duda at the Presidential Palace.

William has said the two-day trip will allow him to personally thank troops and “underline” his support and gratitude for the Polish people who have aided Ukrainian refugees.

Prince of Wales visit to Poland
The Prince of Wales lays a wreath (Yui Mok/PA)

It came after he thanked British troops roughly an hour’s drive from the Ukrainian border for “defending our freedoms” by “keeping an eye on” the situation in Ukraine.

After arriving at the defence military base in the south-eastern Polish city of Rzeszow on Wednesday afternoon, the prince, dressed casually in a black puffer jacket and trousers, was shown a missile launcher.

Speaking to the soldiers, he said: “I just wanted to come here in person to say thank you for all that you’re doing, keeping everyone safe out here and keeping an eye on what’s going on.

“So, just a big thank you for what you do on a day-to-day basis.”

Royalty – Queen Elizabeth II State Visit to Poland
The then Queen receives a warm welcome and flowers from schoolchildren during a walkabout in the old town square, Warsaw in 1996 (John Stillwell/PA)

He added: “You’re doing a really important job out here and defending our freedoms is really important, and everyone back home thoroughly supports you.”

It is his first trip to Poland since he visited in 2017 with his wife, the Princess of Wales.