On Thursday 30th March, The Prince of Wales met with members of Romania’s Royal Family at the Elisabeta Palace. His Royal Highness has previously visited the Elisabeta Palace in 2011 and 2016.
Romania is now governed as a republic after the forced abdication of HM King Michael I of Romania in 1947. His Majesty told the New York Times about how the Communist Party forced him to sign his abdication, threatening to kill 1,000 students if he refused. The King was sent into exile but remained on good terms with Europe’s ruling monarchies. He attended the wedding of Princess Elizabeth and The Duke of Edinburgh and is friends with the British Royal Family. An opinion poll in January 2012 saw King Michael declared as the most trusted person in Romania, well ahead of any current political leaders. Although still kept from power, the 95 year old monarch lobbied for Romania to join NATO and helped the government by touring Europe. He can still draw huge crowds of admirers in Romania and this popularity has concerned republicans for decades. King Michael affirms that his removal from power was illegal, and that he is the rightful ruler of Romania.
The King has recently withdrawn from public life following the death of his wife Queen Anne and a cancer diagnosis. In March 2016, The King released a statement:
“In recent weeks we have received news of a serious medical diagnosis. This situation comes in the year when family and country are celebrating 150 years since the founding of the dynasty and the modern Romanian state. My daughter Margarita, the Custodian of the Crown, I am sure will find the wisdom and the strength to represent me and to carry out my public duties. I have asked the Royal Council to continue its mission and provide advise to the Custodian of the Crown.
Michael R “
As a result, Prince Charles met Crown Princess Margareta of Romania, King Michael’s eldest daughter, for afternoon tea at the palace.