ROYAL NEWS: MAY 2007

Last updated: June 2nd, 2007.

May 1st
Princess Leonor of Spain for the first time saw her baby sister Sofía this morning. She came to visit her mother and sister in hospital together with her father. Other visitors were King Juan Carlos, Queen Sofía, Princess Elena and Jaime de Marichalar with their children, Princess Christina and Iñaki Urdangarín with their children, as well as Princess Letizia's mother Paloma Rocasolano and Letizia's grandparents.

Hereditary Prince Vladimir Lobkowicz married Alix Paul-Cavallier at the Monastry Church of Strahov at the Hradschin in Prague, Czechia on 28 April. The wedding was celebrated by the Bishop of Ostrava, Frantisek Lobkowicz, assisted by among others Father Zdenko Filip Lobkowicz, both uncles of the groom. Among the 300 guests were Prince Karl von Schwarzenberg and Count Ferdinand Kinsky von Wchinitz und Tettau. In the evening a dinner took place in a hotel in Prague.
  • Some wedding pictures


  • May 2nd
    Three-weeks-old Princess Ariane of the Netherlands was taken to the Leids Universitair Medisch Centrum this morning with high fever. In hospital it turned out she has a bronchial tube infection. It is expected she will have to stay in hospital for one week to finish the treatment and to recover well. The condition of the princess is stable and it is understood the fever has gone.

    May 3rd
    Princess Ariane of the Netherlands left the children's intensive care of the Leids Universitair Medisch Centrum and is at the high care unit now. She most likely has a viral infection. She is doing much better today and the tests didn't lead to concerns.

    The Duchess of Cornwall returned to her duties today for the first time after her hysterectomy operation two months ago. She will present an award and meet performers at the 2007 Classical Brit Awards at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

    An army source said last night that the deployment of Prince Harry of Wales to Southern Iraq has been delayed due to security concerns. This would allow time for soldiers of his regiment to assess the potential dangers his unit will face. The Ministry of Defence didn't want to confirm the reports.

    IOC President Jacques Rogge and the executive board yesterday said that among others Princess Haya bint Al Hussein of Jordan has been nominated for membership of the International Olympic Committee. The election, considered a formality, will take place in July during the IOC session in Guatemala City.

    May 4th
    The Princess of Asturias and her newborn daughter Sofía left hospital in Madrid around 18.10. They were accompanied by the Prince of Asturias and the eldest daughter Leonor, who amused the onlookers by trying to grasp some media microphones. Sofía slept in the arms of her mother.
  • HQ Family photos from Casareal


  • May 5th
    Princess Ariane of the Netherlands left hospital this morning. She is doing much better and will further be treated at home for the bacterial and viral infection she has. The Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima of the Netherlands thanked the medical team.

    May 7th
    The Greek Royal House announced that Princess Alexia and her husband Carlos Morales Quintana expect their fourth child in November.

    King Tomasi Kulimoetoke of Wallis, a French Pacific island, died today at the age of 88. He became king in 1959.

    May 8th
    Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh paid a state visit to the USA from 3 to 8 May. They visited Virginia on 3 and 4 May to commemorate the anniversary of the Jamestown settlement. On 5 May the couple attended the 133rd Kentucky Derby. From 6 to 8 May the Queen and the Duke were in Washington D.C. for a visit hosted by President George Bush and his wife. A white-tie state banquet took place on Monday evening at the White House with 134 selected guests. The dinner had five courses reflecting both nations. It was the fourth state visit of the Queen to the USA.

    Copyright: dana press/Steen Brogaard

    The Danish royal court today released pictures of Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark with their children, as well as pictures of the newborn daughter alone and with her brother Christian. Photographer Steen Brogaard told that Christian couldn't wait to show the photographer his little sister.

    The tomb of King Herod has been found at a compound on a hill at a site called Herodium in the Judean Desert near Jerusalem. That was announced last night by the Hebrew University. Israeli archaeologist Professor Ehud Netzer had been searching for the tomb in Herodium since 1972.

    May 9th
    Prince Nayef al-Shaalan bin Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia today was sentenced in absentia to 10 years in jail at court in Paris, France. He was convicted for illegally importing drugs, of complicity in the transport, detention and provision of drugs and of criminal conspiracy. He is accused of having used his diplomatic immunity to smuggle drugs to France with his private jet. Five others were also given 10 years in prison on the same charges. The Prince intends to appeal.

    May 11th
    A court in Moscow today rejected a plea by Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia to officially rehabilitate Tsar Nikolaj II of Russia and his family. The court however also asked the office of the Prosecutor General to reconsider an earlier ruling that the family of the Tsar doesn't qualify for rehabilitation. Lawyer German Lukyanov says the family will lodge an appeal. "It's Russia itself that needs this rehabilitation, because it will show that it really makes concrete steps to denounce that grisly murder of the tsar's family," he said.

    May 13th
    Malietoa Tanumafili II, head of state of Samoa died at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole II National Hospital at Moto'otua on Friday night at the age of 94. He was born on 4 January 1913. He succeeded the title Malietoa in 1940 after the death of his father. Malietoa Tanumafili II became joint head of state in 1962 when Samoa became an independent country, and sole head of state in 1963 when Tupua Tamasese Mea'ole died. His wife Lili Tunu died in 1986. He is survived by two sons and two daughters. His successor will be selected by the legislature for a five-year term.

    May 14th
    Today a procession on the occasion of the closing of the Octave of Our Lady was held at Luxemburg-City. Pictures show that Tessy de Nassau, wife of Prince Louis of Luxemburg, might be pregnant with the couple's second child. This wasn't confirmed by the grand-ducal court, but a family member of Tessy is said to have told the Tageblatt that she is indeed pregnant again.

    May 15th
    Between 28 July and 25 September an exhibition at Buckingham Palace will commemorate the 60th wedding anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh. The couple married on 20 November 1947 at Westminster Abbey in London. The exhibition will show archive films of the ceremony, the wedding dress, jewelry, gifts, as well as dresses worn by Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth during the wedding and the uniforms worn by King George VI and the Duke of Edinburgh.

    May 16th
    General Sir Richard Dannatt of the British Army announced today that Prince Harry of Wales will not be sent to Iraq because of the unacceptable risks. He said: "There have been a number of specific threats, some reported some not reported, which relate directly to Prince Harry as an individual. "These threats expose not only him but also those around him to a degree of risk that I now deem unacceptable." He doesn't rule out sending the prince to the region in the future. In a statement Clarence House says Prince Harry is very disappointed but understands and accepts the decision. He will not leave the army.

    May 17th
    Norway's National Day was celebrated today. In the morning Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit with their children Marius, Ingrid Alexandra and Sverre Magnus greeted the school children of the Municipality of Asker who paraded past their home at Skaugum. Later thousands of school children paraded in front of the royal palace in Oslo, watched by the royal family standing on the balcony.

    The marriage (akad nikah) between 50-year-old Crown Prince Raja Muda Nazrin Shah of Perak and Zara Salim Davidson was solemnised this morning at the royal palace Istana Iskandariah in Kuala Kangsar, Perak, Malaysia. The 34-year-old bride wore a dress sprinkled with sparkling crystals and beads. The bride is the only daughter of Salim Davidson and Sharifah Azaliah Tan Sri Syed Omar Shahabudin, as well as a great-granddaughter of the 24th Sultan of Kedah, Sultan Abdul Hamid Halim Shah. The ceremony was attended by about 300 guests.

    May 18th
    A bicycle which was ridden by Diana princess of Wales in her childhood was auctioned at Keys Auctioneers in Aylsham, Norfolk, for £ 1200. The lot also included a letter written in 1982 and a Christmas card from 1994, both signed by the Princess. The buyer is The House On The Hill Toy Museum in Stansted, Essex. The sellers were the family of a former housekeeper of the Princess's family, Maudie Pendry, who bought the bike for £ 20.

    The funeral of Malietoa Tanumafili II, head of state of Samoa, has taken place today at Samoa's capital Apia and attracted a huge crowd. During the funeral service the coffin of Malietoa Tanumafili II was placed on a decorated dais, draped in the Samoan flag. At the end of the service the coffin was carried away by ceremonial police. Among the guests were the Kings of the Maori and of Tonga as well as Prime Minister Helen Clark of New Zealand and Governor-General Michael Jeffery of Australia. Malietoa Tanumafili II was buried at the royal cemetery at Tiafau. He lay in state on Friday at the Apia parliament.

    Zara Salim Davidson was proclaimed Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Raja Puan Besar Perak at a ceremony at the Istana Iskandariah, Bukit Chandan, in Kuala Kangsar this morning. She will from now on be addressed as Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Raja Puan Besar Perak Darul Ridzuan, Tuanku Zara Salim. The ceremony was attended by close members of the Perak royal family and 150 dignitaries. The title had been vacant for the last two decades.

    May 19th
    The wedding between Crown Prince Raja Muda Nazrin Shah of Perak and Zara Salim Davidson was concluded on Saturday night with the bersanding ceremony at the Istana Iskandariah in Bukit Chandan, Kuala Kangsar, Perak, Malaysia. Bride and groom were dressed in yellow Terengganu songket Malay attire. The ceremony was attended by sultans, politicians and other VIPs. There were fireworks and an oil lamp festival. More than 10.000 people were out on the street to celebrate. More than 6500 guests attended a feast for the common folk at the Arena Square.

    May 20th
    The newspaper News of the World says that Prince Harry of Wales could be sent to Afghanistan to join the British troops there later this year. Some army bosses this weekend suggested he could be sent to Sierra Leone.

    May 22nd
    According to a poll by the Daily Express under thousands of their readers 90% of the people doesn't want the Duchess of Cornwall to become a Queen when the Prince of Wales becomes King of Great Britain. The poll comes after a new documentary on Channel 4, Queen Camilla - which will be aired on 31 May - says that aides are launching a campaign to recognise the Duchess of Cornwall as his Queen, rather than the previously decided title of Princess Consort.

    May 23rd
    King Juan Carlos of Spain was voted the greatest Spaniard in a TV show at Antena 3 yesterday evening. In second place came author Miguel Cervantes followed by explorer Christopher Columbus in third place. On the fourth place was Queen Sofia, seventh the Prince of Asturias and fifteenth the Princess of Asturias. 3000 People were questioned by Antena 3.

    May 24th
    A 34-year-old man who possessed an axe was arrested by the police just yards from where Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain was to begin a walkabout 30 minutes later. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited Huddersfield in West Yorkshire. The man was charged with possessing an offensive weapon and released on bail.

    May 28th
    On June 6 Channel 4 is to broadcast a documentary called "Diana: The Witnesses in The Tunnel". The programme features interviews with photographers and people who saw the crash in Paris on 31 August 1997 in which Diana Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed died together with chauffeur Henri Paul. Furthermore photos of the accident will be shown that will includes graphic images of Princess Diana receives oxygen, a passing student trying to help Trevor Rees-Jones, the Princess's bodyguard, and of the inside of the car. Publishing such pictures in Great Britain is a highly sensitive subject. A spokesman for Clarence House said: "They [the princes William and Harry] have made their position on this very clear. They want their mother to be allowed to rest in peace." Despite calls to cancel the programme, Channel 4 insists in broadcasting the documentary. They say that they have 'carefully and sensitively' chosen the photos for the documentary. They further say: "These photographs are an important and accurate eyewitness record of how events unfolded after the crash. We acknowledge there is great public sensitivity surrounding pictures of the victims and these have not been included."

    May 29th
    The Dutch news programme NOVA this evening said that they had found confidential documents from the Queen's Office in a garbage container behind the office's building. The documents included preliminary dates for about 10 state visits up to 2010, telephonenumbers, memos, meetings and details of calendar dates. NOVA have handed over the documents to the Government Information Service. Measures will be taken to ensure that these kinds of confidential documents are not leaked again. Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende, responsible for the Queen's Office, said tonight that 'this should not have happened'.

    May 30th
    Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko of Japan arrived home on Wednesday evening. They made a 10-day European tour that took them to Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Great Britain. At Haneda airport the couple were greeted by Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako as well as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his wife Akie. On Tuesday the imperial couple had been guests of honour at an intimate dinner at Buckingham Palace with Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain, the Duke of Edinburgh and a few dignitaries. At the beginning of the European visit the imperial couple met with King Carl XVI Gustaf, Queen Silvia and Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden.

    May 31st
    In a letter to the Parliament Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende of the Netherlands today wrote that the Office of the Queen will destroy all documents and memos from now on that are not intended for the archive. He wrote in response to the leaking of confidential information the tv-programme NOVA found in a garbage bin. Mr. Balkenende said this should never have been allowed to happen and blamed the incident to a 'human error'. There is no reason to think that the security of the members of the royal family were at stake at any point.

    The Imperial Household Agency today announced that Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan will undergo surgery to remove a benign growth in his small intestine at the University of Tokyo Hospital on June 6. The polyp had been found during a regular health check in March. The Crown Prince is expected to stay in hospital for about one week and then recuperate at home for another week.


    Royal News: April 2007. Last updated: May 1st, 2007.