In an exclusive interview for “Večernje novosti” newspapers, HRH Crown Prince Alexander spoke about current issues related to the Royal Family and refuted many speculations present in the public these days. The interview was prepared by the journalist of “Novosti”, Mrs. Dragana Matović.

This is the truth about the occurrences at the Royal Palace

Since Peter III Karadjordjevic gave up the Throne on behalf of his younger brother Philip, the avalanche of doubts was set in motion about the relationships among the heirs to the Serbian Crown. The additional confusion was created by the fact that Crown Prince Alexander Karadjordjevic, the father of the Princes, and first in line of succession to the Throne, didn’t attend the “abdication” in Seville. His comments were late for the whole two days, which provoked even more curiosity in the public. There were even some speculations that “evil stepmother”, Crown Princess Katherine, brought the seed of discord to the family.

Crown Prince Alexander Karadjordjevic in his exclusive interview for Novosti emphasizes that “whoever feeds the media with lies and inverts the truth, his family included, should be ashamed”.

I am certain that you will remember, there were similar false statements and speculations regarding other family members when I did the last interview with you, a few years ago, says for our newspapers the Head of the Royal House and the father of Princes Peter, Philip and Alexander. That’s not something any decent person should do. Making private matters public and spreading lies, does not contribute to the unity of the family, on the contrary they create division. Any decent person must be ashamed of such a doing. Those who are hiding behind words “source known to the newspapers” will not pass without consequences. I will not tolerate that family matters are made public and create division within the Royal Family.

Is there any discord, as it is written, between your sons and your wife, Crown Princess Katherine?

I do not want to discuss their relationship, the same as I do not want to discuss the relationship between my sons and their mother, Princess Maria de Gloria. Katherine took care of them daily, she took them to kindergarten while we lived in London, helped me in their upbringing. We went on picnics together. She took care of them while they were growing up, went to school, studied. I am it endlessly grateful to her for that. The boys spent holidays with his mother. Princess Maria de Gloria occasionaly stayed at our home in London. For two years we would be her guests in Seville, and she and her husband would come and stay with us at the Royal Palace. It was important for us that boys see that there were no quarrels between us, hat we were a family despite the divorce.

Considering that relationships are so good, it is surprising that Philip and his family don’t live with you at the Royal Palace?

I want my sons will be with us ma. I have paved the way for them to come. Their return to Serbia has been my long time dream. Not just mine, but of all of us. Mine wife and I asked them for decades to come here. Katherine introduced Danica to Philip. We organized their wedding. It is not true that there is no place for them at the Royal Palace. That is why these lies are so preposterous.

You say that relationships in your family are good, but you were surprised that Peter abdicated in favor of his brother?

Peter called me from Seville to say that he was going ahead with his wish to be no longer Hereditary Prince. I have known about his wish for some time. I asked him if he was certain about his decision. Philip also called me to say he was in Seville. I asked him if he was with his wife and Stefan in Seville, he said he was there only with his mother and Peter. He did not mention the ceremony, or that anybody else from Belgrade would be there. I didn’t know what was happening, until I received Peter’s e-mail with the document. On one page there was his resignation, a on the other many signatures. It all happened behind my back, I knew nothing about it. As the Head of the Royal Family, I should have been consulted.

Do you support your sons decision?

It was not easy for Peter to make such a decision, but I respect his wishes, and I wish him all the happiness and success. As every father, I wish all the best to my son. I do not have objections regarding Peter’s document on resignation, but I do have objections regarding the ceremony. The Patriarch was not there and the Crown Council had also not been consulted. In addition, this event took place abroad, far away from Serbia. The giving up of succession rights needs to be done properly, in accordance with our tradition and the Family Rulebook of our Royal Family. The Karadjordjevic dynasty originated from its people. We know how important traditions and customs are for Serbs, so the Royal Family must respect them. In addition to folk customs, we also have the rules that we must follow and respect. If we are proud of the legacy of Kings Peter I, Alexander I and Peter II, then we must also live and act by the rules they had established.

Why were you most upset that the “abdication” took place far from the homeland?

My sons and I used to live in unwanted exile, far from our homeland. It is a sad destiny of each member of our family. At some point of our lives, we all  had to live far away from our people and our Serbia. Memories of exile are fresh and painful. After so much time spent in exile, it was unnecessary to conduct such important act for our family so far away from Serbia. I reacted, because this event was important for our country and our people.

Have you considered encouraging the idea of ​​Philip as the future King, if that would lead to a referendum on the return of the Monarchy? 

My views about the restoration of the constitutional parliamentary monarchy in Serbia were presented long time ago. I haven’t changed them. I consider constitutional monarchy a very good form of government, that would benefit our people and our homeland. It is part of the tradition of our country and the heritage of my family, but it is possible only if it is supported by the people of Serbia. This topic must be discussed, the argumentative views of both sides must be heard, those who are for and those who are against the monarchy restoration. This form of government has proven to be very good and efficient in many countries – just look at modern constitutional monarchies, Norway, Sweden, Great Britain, Spain, Luxembourg, Japan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and many others. The level of democracy, human rights, freedom and social justice is very high. Together with unity, stability and continuity that the monarchy brings, it would bring prosperity for Serbia as well.

The latest developments in your family have once again revived stories that the state gives millions for the maintenance of the Royal Palace?

They are criticizing me for the money from the budget for buildings owned by the state, although it is small amount comparing to other institutions. In addition, the state takes most of the tourism money. I use no budget money for personal expenses and the home my family paid for many years ago is still not given back! This is a big property, with two old Palaces and auxiliary buildings, that needs much work and caring for. And as you wrote in your previous texts, before the budget funds were authorized and started coming, which only happened several years after our return to Serbia, my wife Crown Princess Katherine and I sold our own private property abroad and invested several millions of Euros to save the Palace from deterioration. I ask myself how many homes will be taken away from me?

My wife and I work in agreement on everything

My wife is a caring person, Karadjordjevic says. She saved many people with her humanitarian work. It has been over 35 years I am married to my wife, and I think that if there was trouble it would have been reported a long time ago. We agree on everything. It wasn’t always easy for us. We gave up everything to come to Serbia. We have helped, we are helping, and we will do that in the future.

Enemy of the State for the communists

 – IN THE TIME of the Кingdom, the land on which the Royal Compound is located was bought, and the Palaces were built and maintained with the private funds of my grandfather, King Alexander I and my father King Peter II, says Karadjordjevic. The undemocratic regime of communist dictatorship that ruled Yugoslavia after World War II illegally confiscated it in 1947, along with everything else that was my family’s private property. That dictatorial regime in the same act stripped me of my citizenship, declaring me an enemy of the state at a time when I was not even two years old. When we got the right to live in our family house in 2001 (sounds absurd, the right to live in your own home), the Law on Revoking the Decree on Confiscation of Citizenship and Property of the Karadjordjevic Family was passed, but only in the part concerning citizenship. Article 2 of this law stipulates that the conditions for the return of confiscated property will be regulated by a special law. We are still waiting for that. To put it simply – my home has not been returned yet.