King Felipe and Queen Letizia welcomed Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa during a visit to Madrid last week.
Don Felipe held a reception with the president and other members of the Portuguese delegation at the Madrid Royal Palace. The ceremonies were not at the level of a state visit, but Spain and Portugal are generous when welcoming each other’s leaders, even for brief stops.
King Felipe and Queen Letizia also welcomed de Sousa for a private dinner at their unofficial residence at Zarzuela Palace in Madrid’s outskirts.
Earlier this month King Felipe had a work meeting with Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid at Zarzuela Palace.
King Felipe also met in recent days with Ibero-American Secretary General Rebeca Grynspan.
King Felipe last week marked the 40th anniversary of the failed coup that almost derailed Spain’s nascent Democracy in 1981.
His Majesty presided over a small ceremony at the Congress of Deputies with Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and other top officials.
King Felipe recalled his father, King Juan Carlos, being instrumental in putting down the coup. He called military leaders and, after delays, was able to make a televised address to call for respecting the new constitution.
The coup involved a Civil Guard officer, Antono Tejero, storming the Congress with a small crew and holding lawmakers hostage. Plotters also took over state television and were poised to begin taking over the country.
King Felipe was a child when the events happened. King Juan Carlos made sure he was present during some of the toughest moments so the then-heir would learn from the developments.
Last week’s arrest of Spanish rapper Pablo Hasel has unleashed days of violent protests in Barcelona and other areas, particularly in Catalonia.
Catalan police arrested Hasel at the University of Lleida, where he was holed up with his supporters. Hasel had until February 12 to turn himself in after the Spanish Supreme Court upheld a 2018 conviction against the rapper of supporting terrorism and injuries against the Crown.
Spain’s penal code includes provisions to punish people who insult the the King or his family. The law is not meant to silence criticism of the Crown and prosecutions are rare.
The Spanish Royal Family released this year’s Christmas cards this week.
King Felipe, Queen Letizia, Princess Leonor and Infanta Sofia signed one card featuring the princess and the infanta posing in the community of Somao in the Principality of Asturias.
The Princess of Asturias Foundation picks a community to celebrate every year in concert with the Princess of Asturias Awards. Somao won this year.
King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia released a separate card, featuring a painting of the Nativity. They usually feature a piece of art with a Chrismas theme in their card.
The Royal Family used to release a card with multuple relatives but stopped doing so after they found it hard to get everyone together. Controversies and King Juan Carlos’ abdication have also reduced the number of people considered members of the core Royal Family.