Madrid / The decision of the Spanish King Emeritus Juan Carlos I to move to live outside of Spain and leave the Zarzuela Palace came after a drip of information about alleged private businesses, investigated by the Supreme Court Prosecutor’s Office.
On Monday, August 3, the Royal House publicly announced the decision of the king emeritus to abandon his residence and fix it in another country due to the public repercussion of “certain past events” in his private life and to facilitate his son, Felipe VI, “the tranquility and tranquility that the exercise of their functions requires”.
On the other hand, Don Juan Carlos’s lawyer also issued a statement in which the monarch indicates that he remains at the disposal of the Prosecutor’s Office.
Don Juan Carlos’s letter
“Guided by the conviction of providing the best service to the Spanish, their institutions and you as king”, Don Juan Carlos communicated with these words and by letter to his son the decision taken, according to the statement from the Royal Household.
“I am communicating my thoughtful decision to move, at the moment, outside of Spain,” says the text of the letter.
Don Juan Carlos adds that he has been king of Spain for almost forty years, and during all of them he has always wanted the best for the country and for the Crown.
“My legacy and my own dignity as a person, they demand it of me,” says Don Juan Carlos in the letter released by the Royal Household.
The Zarzuela statement indicates that Felipe VI has transmitted to his father “his heartfelt respect and gratitude for his decision.”
“The king,” says the text, “wishes to emphasize the historical importance of his father’s reign, as a legacy and political and institutional work of service to Spain and democracy, and at the same time wants to reaffirm the principles and values on which it it is based, within the framework of our Constitution and the rest of the legal system “.
The Prosecutor’s investigations
The Office of the Supreme Court Prosecutor investigates the origin of 65 million euros deposited in Switzerland at the Lucum foundation, based in Panama, to determine if they were commissions paid by Saudi Arabia to don Juan Carlos for the construction of the AVE to Mecca. money that was later transferred to an account in the Bahamas in the name of King Corinna Larsen’s former friend.
International impact of a historic decision
As soon as they knew each other, the decision of don Juan Carlos I, the pages of the main newspapers in the world, radio stations and television networks, as well as social networks echoed the news.
After the surprise, some European media described the departure from Spain of King Juan Carlos as “humiliating” (United Kingdom), exile (France) or flight (Italy) while others recognized the work of Juan Carlos as head of the Spanish State to restore democracy in Spain after the dictatorship of General Franco, as well as its decisive role in aborting the 1981 coup attempt.
In general, the two ideas are confronted in the media. As the French daily Liberatión summarizes: “the icon of the Spanish democratic transition, which turned its back on an authoritarian regime in which Franco had made it its successor, has largely lost its aura and popularity.”
The Financial Times points out the same thing: the decision of the King Emeritus is an “extraordinary epilogue” to a reign in which Juan Carlos was considered a hero of democracy for his work to thwart a coup attempt in 1981.
And from the first advance of the news, numerous Latin American media reflected the departure from Spain of Juan Carlos I, considered in many foreign ministries as a key political figure and “symbol” for democratization in Latin American countries.
The political debate in Spain
Since the day of the news, representatives of all Spanish political parties have prosecuted the King Emeritus decision, respecting or disapproving it, amid the media scandal over the news published by his alleged private businesses, contributing to the debate in civil society.
The head of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, has considered “adequate” the measure of Felipe VI to “mark distances” with Juan Carlos I when leaving Spain for his possible irregular behaviors and has vindicated the monarchy in the face of criticism from Unidas Podemos, his partner government, because “institutions are not judged, but people”.
Sánchez has made a firm defense of the Crown and the constitutional pact after his coalition partners have warned that the “unworthy flight” of the king emeritus abroad “leaves the monarchy in a very compromised and delicate position.”
The main opposition force, the Popular Party (PP, center-right), expressed its “absolute respect” after hearing the announcement and highlighted the “decisive and decisive” role of the king emeritus in the arrival of democracy after the dictatorship of General Franco,