King Prepares to Open Parliament

King Felipe is preparing to for the Solemn Opening of the Courts, the opening of parliament, in the coming days.

Earlier this month His Majesty swore in Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, who is leading a left-wing coalition government with Podemos.

The King last week swore-in other members of the incoming government at Zarzuela Palace.

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Spanish Royal Household

Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias and Alberto Garzón wore pins to protest fascism. Both are considered anti-monarchists.

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Spanish Royal Household

Sánchez’s Socialist Party is also nominally republican in nature but many of its members have come to appreciate the King’s role.

King Mourns Oman Ruler

King Felipe traveled to Oman last week to mourn the death of Sultan Qaboos bin Said.

The King met with the country’s new sultan, Haitham bin Tariq, and delivered official condolences from Span.

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Spanish Royal Household
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Spanish Royal Household

The Spanish Royal Family has always looked to keep good relations with rulers in the Arab world.

Infanta Pilar, King’s Aunt, Dies

Infanta Pilar, the Duchess of Badajoz and King Felipe’s aunt, has died, media outlets reporter this morning. She was 83.

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The infanta was daighter of Infante Juan, who went by the title of Count of Barcelona, even though he was never officially Spain’s king and lived in exile.

Infanta Pilar’s mother was Princess María de las Mercedes of Bourbon-Two Sicilies.

King Appoints Prime Minister

King Felipe this afternoon appointed Pedro Sánchez to be Spain’s new prime minister.

The president signed a royal decree after Sánchez won a vote in the Congress of Deputies following months of political stalemate.

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Spanish Royal Household

Congress President Meritxell Batet met with the King in his office at Zarzuela Palace to formalize the appointment.

 

King Addresses Military Leaders

King Felipe addressed Spanish military leaders at the Madrid Royal Palace throne room yesterday for the first major royal event of the year.

The so-called Pascua Militar takes place on Epiphany and is meant to commemorate the armed forces and address Spain’s defense needs.

The King said the military remained committed to defending the Constitution and the country’s interests.

King Charles III started the Pascual Militar in the 1700’s. King Juan Carlos resurrected the tradition when he became king.

King Says Catalonia Top Concern In Christmas Address

King Felipe this evening made his latest call for coexistence and understanding among Spaniards.

His Majesty delivered his annual Christmas Eve address, in which he called the economy and the Catalan crisis top concerns.

“We don’t live in easy times,” said His Majesty, calling for “firm confidence in ourselves and in Spain.”

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Spanish Royal Household

Don Felipe also said growing economic inequality and those left behind by economic growth and technology were a “principal concern.”

But like many previous remarks, the speech was focused on pushing an image of Spain as “very open to the world” and of “tolerance and respect.”

King Felipe also alluded to the ongoing efforts by acting Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez to form a new government.