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Posts Tagged ‘King Felipe’

Members of the Spanish Royal Family presided over National Day festivities in Madrid this week amid the ongoing constitutional crisis.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

With the Catalan government threatening independence, attendance was up at the Fiesta Nacional military parade.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

The Ministry of Defense and other government organizers moved the event north to accommodate more spectators.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King held a brief reception at the Royal Palace after the parade. He has otherwise cleared his agenda to deal with the crisis.

The day was not a total success. One of the fighter jets that participated in the pageantry crashed and the pilot died.

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King Felipe this evening delivered a rare and fiery speech against the Catalan government’s move toward independence from Spain.

The King, who spoke from Zarzuela Palace, called this week’s illegal pro-independence referendum and other developments a threat to “national sovereignty.”

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

Catalan leaders have been pushing for a legal referendum for years, something the central government has rejected, fearing many people will use the occasion to cast a protest vote over economic and other grievances.

The Catalan leadership is now threatening to declare independence even though polls show most Catalans don’t support the move.

Don Felipe is calling their actions “unacceptable disloyalty,” and against Democracy and the rule of law, reiterating constitutional protections and Catalonia’s Statute of Autonomy.

The King’s speech is almost unprecedented. His father, King Juan Carlos, delivered major messages during his abdication and during an attempted coup in the early 1980’s.

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King Juan Carlos in 1981.

Left wing and pro-independence parties slammed the speech for not focusing enough on dialogue. The King, however, has pressed for dialogue numerous times before.

“These moments are hard but we will overcome,” said the King, stressing Catalonia would continue being Spanish.

He said the Crown would continue standing by Democracy and the Constitution, and the “unity and permanence of Spain.”

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King Felipe once again used his bully pulpit to address the crisis in Catalonia, where pro-independence parties are looking to force a referendum on independence.

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King Felipe and Queen Letizia greet residents of Cuenca. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King, during remarks in recent days at an awards ceremony related to culture, spoke about Spain’s “constitutional democracy” and national “coexistence.”

Don Felipe said the Spanish Constitution would prevail as the guarantor of liberty and progress, and against those who seek to break it.

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The King during remarks at the Cuenca Cathedral. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King often addresses the Catalan question in indirect terms, trying to stay above politics.

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King Felipe participated this weekend in a mass demonstration in Barcelona against terrorism.

The event, also attended by national and regional leaders, follows an attack in that city earlier this month.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

Rescue workers and officials welcomed the King. Some anti-monarchy activists and pacifists, upset about Spain’s export of military weapons, protested his arrival.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King has made it a point to visit Barcelona several times since the attack. His presence as a symbol of unity is particularly important amid pro-independence rumblings in the Autonomous Community of Catalonia.

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King Felipe and Queen Letizia were back in Barcelona today in response to this week’s terror attacks.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King and Queen visited the injured in at least two Barcelona area hospitals.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

They also signed a condolence book at Barcelona City Hall and left flowers at the scene of the incident.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

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@ Casa de S.M. el Rey

Soon after the incident, the Royal Household sent out a tweet calling the attackers murderers and saying all of Spain was with Barcelona.

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King Felipe traveled to Barcelona today to participate in a moment of silence for the victims of terrorism in Spain this week.

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The King walks with Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. © Presidencia del Gobierno

The King and other Spanish and Catalan dignitaries left their summer vacations to attend to the crisis.

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The King with other Catalan and Spanish leaders. © Agencia EFE

Terrorism is nothing new in Spain and members of the Royal Family. The country has dealt with Basque separatists in the past and the 2004 Madrid train bombings.

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Members of the Spanish Royal Family returned to their traditional vacation spot of Palma de Mallorca late last month.

It’s somewhat of a working vacation because the King and Queen, and other relatives, must follow through with certain traditions.

King Felipe, for example, presided over the King’s Cup over the weekend, much like his father did before him.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King, Queen Letizia and Queen Sofia held their annual reception for authorities and leaders of the Balearic Islands.

Queen Letizia wowed with her dress, which harkens back to fabric that Spanish traders brought from Asia centuries ago.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

Late last month, upon arriving in Mallorca, the King met with several officials, including the head of the Balearic Parliament.

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© Casa de S.M. el Rey

The Royals hold their public meetings at Almudaina Palace, an old Arab fort that became a Spanish royal residence.

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Almudaina Palace

However, they have long stayed at Marivent Palace, which belongs to local authorities but is set aside for the family’s use.

Queen Sofia, who spends the most time in Mallorca, often with get grandchildren, is devoted to the place.

It’s unclear how King Felipe and Queen Letizia see Marivent and Mallorca, but continue the tradition, including an annual photo shoot and press meet-and-greet.

Several royals went out to dinner out on the town. King Juan Carlos, however, was spotted in Ireland and is unlikely to stop in Mallorca.

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