Princess Charlene of Monaco gives birth to twin babies
Princess Charlene of Monaco has given birth to twin babies, Gabriella and Jacques, the palace has announced.
Prince Jacques is next in line to the Monaco throne, a rich principality on the southern French coast.
A statement said both babies were doing well. Princess Gabriella was born first, with Prince Jacques arriving two minutes later.
Prince Albert II, 56, is the son of the late actress Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier III.
Princess Charlene, 36, a Zimbabwean-born former Olympic swimmer, was giving birth to her twins at Princess Grace Hospital.
The prince has two other children but they are excluded from the throne because they were born outside of marriage.
Ahead of the birth, Prince Albert said that the first child to be delivered would become next-in-line, if the twins were the same gender.
Since the twins are mixed gender, Prince Jacques takes the role, due to Monaco’s laws of succession favoring males.
The gender of the twins had been kept a secret even from their father during Princess Charlene’s pregnancy.
Forty-two canon shots were fired to mark the babies’ arrival, 21 for each infant.
It is the first time twins have been born to Monaco’s royal family since it was founded in the 13th Century.
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