Felipe VI of Spain commemorates this Sunday the eighth anniversary of his reign, a time in which he has striven to achieve greater transparency of the monarchical institution, while the controversies took place around alleged irregular business of his father, Juan Carlos I .
These eight years as head of state have been dotted with successive crises of various kinds and complex moments that have forced him to make decisions both at the family and institutional level.
One of the issues that has had the most impact on his career as king has been the case of his father, from whom he has been away since the Spanish Prosecutor’s Office decided to investigate him, more than two years ago, for the money he would have handled abroad before and after ceasing to be head of state.
King Emeritus Juan Carlos has resided in Abu Dhabi since 2020, where he decided to move as a result of the stir that several reports about these businesses raised; he momentarily returned to Spain in May, in the midst of great expectation and controversy, to spend a few days in a tourist town in the northwest and meet his son in Madrid.
Despite filing the case for prescribing the irregularities or being protected by the inviolability that he enjoyed until 2014, when he abdicated in his son, it remains unknown how long he will maintain residence in Abu Dhabi. He had planned a new trip to Spain a few days this month, but he postponed it for “personal” reasons.
To this is added his refusal to give the explanations and apologies that the Government demands of him for his conduct and for what has been known about him on a personal and financial level in recent years.
A RENEWED CROWN
While harshly criticizing Juan Carlos I, the Spanish Executive, chaired by the socialist Pedro Sánchez, has reaffirmed its firm support for Felipe VI for his efforts to renew the Crown.
In March 2020, Felipe VI announced that he was renouncing the inheritance that could personally correspond to him from his father, as well as any asset, investment or financial structure whose origin may not be in accordance with the law or with criteria of righteousness.
And on April 25, the king revealed his assets, of 2.57 million euros (US $ 2.7 million), and the Government approved a decree by which the Court of Accounts will audit the accounting of the Casa del Rey , albeit without congressional control.
“These are measures that reinforce confidence in the institution and in the king. If something defines him, it is his sense of duty, responsibility, the search for general interests, respect for the law and the primacy of ethical and moral principles over any consideration”, assure sources from the Head of State.
However, the trickle of negative news about King Emeritus Juan Carlos has continued to fuel attacks on the Crown by some left-wing parties, such as Podemos, and the Basque and Catalan independentistas.
Recently, the socialists, the conservatives and the extreme right prevented opening a parliamentary debate on the limits of the inviolability of the Head of State, which appears in the Constitution.
Another of the challenges that Felipe VI faces is to normalize his institutional relationship with the sovereign government of Catalonia (northeast), which has subjected him to a veto since he delivered a forceful speech on October 3, 2017 against the illegal independence process that was being promoted at the time by the authorities of that region. EFE