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Princess Margareta of Romania

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Princess Margareta of Romania

Princess Margareta
Crown Princess of Romania
Custodian of the Romanian Crown

Spouse Radu Duda
House House of Romania
Father Michael I
Mother Anne of Bourbon-Parma
Born (1949-03-26) 26 March 1949 (age 65)
Lausanne, Switzerland
Religion Romanian Orthodox
Styles of
Princess Margareta of Romania
Reference style
Her Royal Highness
Spoken style Your Royal Highness
Alternative style Ma'am

Princess Margareta of Romania (born 26 March 1949, Lausanne, Switzerland), also styled as Crown Princess of Romania, Custodian of the Romanian Crown, former[1][2] Princess of Hohenzollern, is the eldest daughter of former King Michael I,[3][4] and of his wife, Anne of Bourbon-Parma. Princess Margareta's father named her the heiress-presumptive to the private royal family in 1997.

Margareta has no children. Her heiress-presumptive is her next sister, Princess Elena of Romania. According to the defunct last democratic royal Constitution, that of 1923, which established succession by salic law, Margarita and her sisters cannot succeed to the throne of Romania (see also "Line of succession to the Romanian throne").

On 30 December 2007,[5][6] King Michael designated Princess Margareta as heiress-presumptive to the throne with the titles of "Crown Princess of Romania" and "Custodian of the Romanian Crown" through an act which, during the republican form of government and in the absence of its approval by the Parliament, would be considered null and void.[7][8] On the same occasion, Michael also asked the Romanian Parliament that, should it consider restoring the Monarchy, it should also abolish the salic law of succession.She is also the first in line to the British throne who is not a descendant of Edward VII.

Private life

On 21 September 1996 in Lausanne Margareta married Radu Duda, created first Radu, Prince of Hohenzollern-Veringen in 1 January 1999,[9] and now called HRH Radu, Prince of Romania[5] in 30 December 2007, future Prince Consort of Romania,[5] who either in her company or most often alone,[10] represents the Royal Family publicly on various occasions. The couple met in 1994 through the work of the Princess Margarita Foundation: Radu Duda was working as an art therapist in orphanages and met when the Princess visited the program. They live in the Elisabeta Palace in Bucharest.[11]

In her youth at the University of Edinburgh, Margareta was involved in a romantic relationship with Gordon Brown, who was later to become Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (2007–2010). Margareta said about it: "It was a very solid and romantic story. I never stopped loving him but one day it didn't seem right any more, it was politics, politics, politics, and I needed nurturing."[12]

Education and work

Romanian Royal Family

HM The King
HM The Queen

*titled accordingly in private family rules

After graduation from the University of Edinburgh, she worked in a number of British universities, specialising in medical sociology and public health policy, later on participating in an international research program coordinated by the World Health Organisation, focused on developing health policy recommendations and preventive pilot projects. In 1983 she moved to Rome and joined the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (UN), where, as a member the World Food Day project team, she worked on the public awareness campaign concerning agricultural programs, nutrition, and poverty alleviation. Three years later she joined the International Fund for Agricultural Development. In the autumn of 1989 she gave up her UN career and moved to Geneva to work with her father, devoting herself entirely to charity work for Romania.

In 1990 Princess Margareta founded The Princess Margarita of Romania Foundation,[13] a non-profit organisation that has contributed to the development of civil society in Romania.

Currently active in 6 countries (Romania, United Kingdom, Switzerland, France, Belgium and the US) the Princess Margareta of Romania Foundation develops programs that:

  • improve the living conditions of children and young people, families at risk and the elderly;
  • stimulate intergenerational solidarity and create bridges of communication between the young and the elderly;
  • contribute to the institutional development of NGOs working with children and seniors;
  • foster local creativity and talent.

During its existence, The Princess Margareta Foundation has collected more than 5 million Euro, through which it has contributed to the development of the Romanian civil society.[14]

Since June 2005, School no. 114 in Bucharest has been named after her.[15]

Controversies

BAE Systems,[16] one of the donors to her charity, and its representatives, have been involved in a corruption scandal regarding the purchase by the Romanian government of two decommissioned UK Royal Navy frigates refurbished by BAE, for which an alleged £ 7 million bribe was paid,[17] some of which, it is also alleged,[18] ended up in the pockets of the royal family of Hohenzollern to which Margarita belongs. The "Gardianul" newspaper,[19][20] noting that both Princess Margarita and her husband, as Special Representative of the Government, had met a number of times with the BAE Systems representatives before and after the signing of the governmental contract, inquired whether the royal family was involved in any lobbying on behalf of the company. In an official communique sent to the newspaper,[20] Prince Radu denied any such lobbying activities, stating that as patron of the British-Romanian Chamber of Commerce in which BAE Systems is a member, he met with this as well as other British companies' representatives.

Political support

The main pro-monarchist party PNŢCD, currently extra-parliamentarian, is ambiguous in its support for Princess Margareta. In 2002, it rejected any role for her or her husband in a restored monarchy,[21][22] while in 2003 the Cluj branch of PNŢCD officially invited her to be its electoral candidate to the Senate of the Republic[23][24] in the upcoming elections.

King Michael has not given up the hope for himself or his family of returning on the throne: "We are trying to make people understand what Romanian monarchy was and what it can still do."[25]

In a July 2013 survey about a potential restoration of monarchy in Romania, 19% of respondents gave Princess Margareta as their favorite, while 29.9% supported his father. 48.1% said they did not know or did not answer.[26]

Honours

Ancestors

See also

References

External links

  • The Princess Margareta of Romania Foundation website
  • The official website of The Romanian Royal Family
Princess Margareta of Romania
House of Romania
Born: 26 March 1949
Romanian royalty
Preceded by
first in line
Line of succession to the former Romanian throne according to the 2007 Statute
1st position
Succeeded by
Princess Elena of Romania
Preceded by
Benjamin Ferner Beckman
Line of succession to the British throne
descended from Alfred, son of Victoria
Succeeded by
Princess Elena of Romania
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