Spanish Defense Minister Margarita Robles said the 17-year-old Spanish Princess Leonor, heir to the Spanish throne, will undergo three years of military training starting in August.
The Spanish monarchy is struggling to repair its image after a series of scandals over the past decade, most notably linked to former King Juan Carlos, who abdicated in 2014 in favor of his son, King Felipe.
«As in all parliamentary monarchies (the heir) must have a military background and military careerRobles said after the cabinet meeting.
The eldest daughter of Felipe Leonor, who will finish her studies at UWC Atlantic College in Wales in a few months, will turn 18 in October.
She is first in the line of succession, unless a male heir is born, followed by her sister Sophia.
Robles noted, “In time, the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces will be a woman, and in recent years we’ve been making a very significant effort to include women in the Armed Forces.”
The Princess will receive her first year of training at the Army Military Academy in Zaragoza, then go to the Naval School and finish her studies at the General Aviation Academy.
The government and the royal house agreed that her “extremely intensive” military training would precede her university studies, following in her father’s footsteps in the 1980s.
Juan Carlos stepped down amid a tax fraud case involving members of the royal family and a scandal over his elephant hunting trip to Africa at a time when Spain was in a deep recession. The former monarch has lived in Abu Dhabi since August 2020, when he left Spain following several investigations conducted in Spain and Switzerland regarding the alleged fraud.
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