King kingdom

King Emeritus Juan Carlos returns almost two years after leaving Spain

While there is not much left for him to accomplish two years of exile far from Spain, the king emeritus Juan Carlos will return to the kingdom next weekend. But only for a visit.

will be the first times he has set foot on Spanish soil since his alleged financial malfeasance forced him to change his address to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, in August 2020.

Now, with the relief of the files that investigated him in Spain, Juan Carlos returns home. He will be in Galicia, in the town of Pontevedra Sanxenxo, where Bourbon practiced one of his passions: regattas.

It was further confirmed that will find his sonKing Felipe VI, in Madrid next week.

On Sunday May 15, Felipe, who inherited his father’s ride during his lifetime in 2014, was in Abu Dhabi, but did not meet him. They barely spoke on the phone.

In Abu Dhabi last December, King Juan Carlos in a tennis match between Nadal and Murray. PhotoEFE


It was a whirlwind institutional trip, lasting two and a half hours, to offer condolences to Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan on the death of his half-brother Khalifa bin Zayed al Nahyan, Emir of Abu Dhabi and leader of State of the United States. United Arab Emirates.

The Royal House has confirmed the telephone conversation between Juan Carlos I and his son, Felipe VI, and the next meeting in Madrid.

The Spaniard they learned about the next visit of the king who ruled Spain for 39 years this Monday, a public holiday in the Community of Madrid for the festivities of San Isidro, its patron saint.

Since Juan Carlos’ financial and passionate turmoil fueled morbidity and gave voice to anti-monarchists who want to see the end of the Crown in Spain, those who continue to pay homage to the monarchy are doing so more and more quietly.

Indeed, the 50 euro Mango dress with which Queen Letizia coincided a few days ago with a winner at a ceremony in Mérida is arousing more interest than the presence of Bourbon in Galicia.

Corinna Zu Sayn Wittgenstein, former lover of Juan Carlos and now main enemy.  Bloomberg picture

Corinna Zu Sayn Wittgenstein, former lover of Juan Carlos and now main enemy. Bloomberg picture

Unconcerned about his popularity rating, the emeritus king, who is already 84 years old, I don’t want to miss the regattas which will take place on Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 May in Sanxenxo and which will be the previous to the World Championship in June.

From the Real Club Náutico de Sanxenxo they have confirmed that the boat of Juan Carlos, the rascalis ready for competition.

The last time the King Emeritus passed through Sanxenxo was in 2019, when he attended the Rey Juan Carlos regatta and presided over the 6-meter Spanish Cup trophy ceremony, accompanied by a of his daughters, the Infanta Elena.

don’t think about coming back

Elena and Cristina, daughters of Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofía, were the only ones in the family who regularly visited the Emeritus of Abu Dhabi. And they even staged a scandal in February 2021: on the occasion of going to visit their father, the infantes were vaccinated against Covid-19 in the Emirates well before the date on which they should have been vaccinated. in Spain.

In March, five days after the Supreme Court prosecutor’s office closed the three ongoing investigations into the accounts of Juan Carlos I, the man chosen by Franco to lead Spain when he died in 1975, he wrote a letter to his son, the current king, telling him he was considering not leaving the Emirates. But what He wants to come often to Spain.

“I prefer, for the time being, for reasons that belong to my private sphere and concern only me, to continue to reside permanently and stably in Abu Dhabi,” Juan Carlos said in the four-paragraph letter. who did not sign as king but as father.

“I am aware of the importance of past events in my private life and that I am really sorry“, he admitted.

“I also feel legitimate pride in my contribution to democratic coexistence and freedom in Spain,” he added.

The prosecution considered that it was not possible to open a criminal investigation against Juan Carlos for the alleged collection of commissions in the works of the fast train in Mecca. And that it was not possible to do so due to the use of cards with undeclared funds or due to alleged accounts in tax havens.

Much to the delight of the emeritus, insufficient evidence was found, the prescribed crimes or the Bourbon was protected by the inviolability of his office when he committed these acts.

King Juan Carlos de Borbón knows, however, that he will never live in the Palacio de la Zarzuela again. For this reason, in his letter he goes ahead to confirm it: “If in the future I return to reside in Spain, my goal is to organize my personal life and my place of residence in private spaces“, wrote.

Juan Carlos had already used letters to communicate to his son, King Felipe, that he was leaving Spain. He did so on August 3, 2020 when, without confessing where would he change address, announced his self-ostracism.

“With the same desire to serve Spain that inspired my reign and given the public repercussions that certain past events in my private life generate, I would like to express my full availability to contribute to facilitating the performance of your dutiesof the tranquility and calm that your high responsibility requires, ”wrote the emeritus at the time.

He still has to deal with the harassment complaint that Corinna Larsen, the close friend who only makes life more difficult for herself, filed against him in the UK.

The High Court in London assures that Juan Carlos there is no legal immunity after his abdication, so that the harassment trial can go ahead.

Domestically, the return of the king’s father shakes the waters of Spanish politics. No party remains indifferent to his imminent return to the homeland.

“It would be nice if all Spaniards could know what his opinion is about the events he took part in, but apart from that we have one person who he goes to his country to see his children. I don’t think it’s more relevant, ”said Eva Granados, spokesperson for the PSOE, the majority party in the government coalition, in the Senate.

“For a father, talking to his son is normal. We are always respectful of the decisions taken by the Crown in this regard,” said the general coordinator of the People’s Party, Elías Bendodo.

“Come or don’t come, no one is going to take away the shame of what they’ve done”preferred to say Aítor Esteban, spokesperson for the Basque Nationalist Party in Congress.

“Spain is a rotten state that allows the return of a corrupt king,” said Josep Rius, spokesman for Junts per Catalunya, the Catalan independence party founded by former President Carles Puigdemont, a refugee in Belgium since he unconstitutionally declared the independence of Catalonia in 2017.