Barbados abandons the queen and becomes a republic – .

Barbados abandons the queen and becomes a republic – .

In the early hours of Tuesday, in a ceremony attended by hundreds of masked officials, a prince and at least one pop star, the Caribbean island of Barbados became a republic, severing ties with Queen Elizabeth II and throwing away the last major vestige of its colonial past.

The nation swore in its first president, Sandra Mason, a former governor general who had been appointed by the Queen. A 21-gun salute rang out to the rhythm of the national anthem. The royal red, yellow and navy flag has been lowered – exactly 55 years after the country gained independence from Britain.

“Today the debate and the speech have become action,” Ms Mason, 72, told spectators gathered in the capital, Bridgetown. “Today we set our compass in a new direction. “

Ms. Mason won a majority vote in Parliament in October to take on this role. In a subsequent speech, Prime Minister Mia Mottley said: “We believe that the time has come for us to claim our full destiny. It is a woman of the soil to whom this honor is returned.


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