King Felipe VI of Spain celebrates 10 years as head of the throne

KING Felipe VI celebrated the 10th anniversary of becoming Spain’s head of state on Wednesday with a series of commemorative events in Madrid.

Proceedings started in the morning with the raising of the flag and the solemn change of the Royal Guard in the Courtyard of the Armoury.

At around 11.30am, Felipe, Queen Letizia and their daughters Leonor and Sofia appeared on the balcony of the Plaza de la Armeria, to watch the ceremony and to greet a crowd of around 2,000 people.


BALCONY SMILES(Cordon Press image)

Many of them waved small Spanish flags that were distributed and chanted: “Long live Spain. Long live the King!”.

The monarch then presided over lunch at the Royal Palace whose guests included 19 citizens representing the country’s regions and the North African enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla.

All of them had been previously awarded the Order of Civil Merit for their contribution to society.

In a speech, the King said: “I have adhered to the Constitution and its values, and I will always adhere to it, in the fulfilment of my responsibilities.”

In what appeared to be a surprise intervention, his daughters Princess Leonor and the Infanta Sofia passed on their congratulations.

“We praise our mother and our father because since we were born they have taught us the value of this institution,” said Leonor.

June 19, 2024 marks the 10th anniversary since Felipe VI was proclaimed King of Spain in a joint session of the Spanish Parliament.

At that time, he promised to establish a ‘renewed monarchy for a new time’ after his father, Juan Carlos I, abdicated 17 days earlier amid his public and private scandals.

Felipe said on Wednesday: “My commitment was one of total dedication to Spain.”

KING’S SPEECH(Cordon Press image)

He called for ‘coherence’ as a fundamental value of society.

“We have to discern what is right from what is not and to act responsibly, even having to assume any personal cost that might involve,” he added.

That comment appeared to allude to the fragile relationship he has had with his sister Cristina, who was tried and subsequently acquitted in the so-called Noos case.

Primarily though, it also hinted at his father, Juan Carlos, who moved to Abu Dhabi in 2020 when he was being investigated by the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office in a case that was eventually shelved.

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