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Re: Belgium: Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte
User logged in as Johan
It is clear that Albert spoke to Juan Carlos as Boudewijn died in Spain and Albert flew to Spain to collect the body of his brother and bring him and queen Fabiola home. What they discussed we don't know.
The story at the time was that Albert called Juan Carlos and Beatrix for advice both told him not to do it and leave the throne to Philippe but he decided otherwise.
Still there have always been stories as well about an understanding between Boudewijn and Albert that if Boudewijn died unexpected before Phillipe was settled and married Albert would succeed.
Im not surprised that Josephine Charlotte expressed her opinion. She was the big sister and well aware of the constitutional rules as well as dynastic rules. I believe Philippe is a better king now because he did get the time to find Mathilde and both of them were well prepared when they took over. Had he been called to the throne in 1993 i doubt if he would have married Mathilde. He would probably have been expected to marry earlier or if he had walked into a political minefield he may have been forced to abdicate putting Astrid on the throne.
When Boudewijn died unexpectedly the official heir was his brother Albert but his perceived heir and the one Boudewijn had been training was Philippe.
It's rumoured that Albert spoke to Juan Carlos and Beatrix before deciding to keep his son out of the limelight for a while and step in himself. I have no doubts that his sister Josephine-Charlotte and her husband Jean also gave their opinion.
I really doubt King Albert spoke to King Juan Carlos and to Queen Beatrix about it.
King Albert's sister Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte was the one who made clear Albert was now the "chef" and this must mean the new king, as Queen Fabiola as well.
This is clearly in this interesting interview King Albert gave a year after his abdication in 2014. He becomes very emotional speaking about his late sister on that crucial day their brother Boudewijn had died on 31 July 1993.
King Albert gave the interview parts in French to Pascal Vrebos and other parts in Dutch to Barend Leyts.
In my opinion Pascal Vrebos was a marvellous and balanced interviewer, relaxed and asking interesting questions.
On the other hand, in my opinion, Barend Leyts was really very bad and terrible in the interview, asking stupid questions and not being at ease at all.
Movie part starts at 40:00 when King Albert II is talking about his sister Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte informing her that their brother king Boudewijn had died.
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