Queen Elizabeth of Britain has sent the new republic of Barbados her “warmest good wishes for your happiness, peace and prosperity in the future” as it celebrates its “momentous day”.
In a message to the new President, Dame Sandra Mason, and her Caribbean citizens, Elizabeth praised the nation, which has a “special place” in her heart, for “its vibrant culture, its sporting prowess and its natural beauty”.
Barbados became a republic during a ceremony attended by leading figures from the country, including Prime Minister Mia Mottley and superstar Rihanna.
Britain's Prince Charles gave a speech highlighting the enduring bonds between the countries.
“On this significant occasion and your assumption of office as the first President of Barbados, I extend my congratulations to you and all Barbadians," the queen said in her message.
“I first visited your beautiful country on the eve of independence in early 1966 and I am very pleased that my son is with you today.
“Over the years, our countries have enjoyed a partnership based on common values, shared prosperity and close collaboration on a wide range of issues, including recent work on climate change.
“It is also a source of great satisfaction that Barbados remains an active participant within the Commonwealth, and I look forward to the continuation of the friendship between our two countries and peoples."
The Queen had been head of state for Barbados since it became independent in 1966.
The issue of becoming a republic was discussed at national level for many decades before Ms Mottley made the historic move last year.