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THE French Ambassador to Tonga His Excellency Gilles Montagier today extended a condolence message to the Legislative Assembly for the passing of his Majesty King George Tupou V.

His Excellency Montagnier conveyed this when he called on the Hon. Deputy Speaker of the House Lord Tu’i’afitu this morning.

“I would like to convey a sincere condolence to the Legislative Assembly on behalf of the French government for the sudden death of late King George Tupou V in Hongkong.

Tonga and France has a close and long standing relationship dated back to the signing of a treaty between the two countries in 1855,” said the visiting diplomat.

The French Ambassador met with Lord Tu’i’afitu and the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly Sione Tekiteki at the Parliament’s conference room.

HE Montagnier is also accredited as the French Ambassador to Fiji, Kiribati and Tuvalu.

Meanwhile Radio Tonga news reports his Majesty’s body is scheduled to arrive in Tonga next Monday, (March 26th). His body will lie in state for two days in the Royal Palace residence before his state funeral next Wednesday, March 28th.

At the same time, one cabinet minister Lord Ma’afu is leading a three member government delegation to Hong Kong to accompany back the king’s body to Tonga. Other members are Lord Fakafanua and Foreign Affairs Secretary Mahe’uli’uli Tupouniua.

Three months mourning period for the king’s death has been confirmed starting from Sunday March 18th through to June 19th 2012.

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