The King of Spain, Juan Carlos I, 76, told the Spanish president Mariano Rajoy his decision to abdicate the crown to his son Felipe de Borbón, Prince of Asturias, 46
Message from His Majesty the King to Spanish
Palacio de La Zarzuela. Madrid, 02.06.2014
I approach all of you this morning through this message to convey, with great emotion, an important decision and the reasons that lead me to take it.
In my proclamation as King, it's been nearly four decades, I took a firm commitment to serve the general interests of Spain, with the aim of they became citizens the protagonists of their own destiny and our nation a modern democracy, fully integrated into Europe.
I determined then lead the exciting national task that allowed citizens to elect their legitimate representatives and perform this great and positive transformation of Spain both needed.
Today, when I look back, I can not help but feel pride and gratitude to you.
Pride, so much good that we have all gotten over the years.
And gratitude for the support you have given me to do my reign, which began in his youth and in times of great uncertainties and difficulties, a long period of peace, freedom, stability and progress.
True to the political desire of my father, the Count of Barcelona, from whom I inherited the historical legacy of the Spanish monarchy, I wanted to be King of all Spaniards. I have been identified and committed to your aspirations, I have enjoyed with your successes and I suffered when pain or frustration you have repossessed.
The long and deep economic crisis we have left serious scars on the social fabric but also we are showing a course of future full of hope.
These difficult years have allowed us to make a self-critical assessment of our mistakes and our shortcomings as a society.
And, as a counterweight also rekindled proud of what we have learned and awareness and we do what we have been and are: a great nation.
This has aroused in us an impulse for renewal, to improve, to correct errors and make way for a decidedly better future.
Today should move to the first line a younger generation, with new energy, determined to embark resolutely transformations and reforms that the current situation is demanding and cope with renewed intensity and dedication to the challenges of tomorrow
In forging this future, a new generation seeks for a just cause the title role, the same that corresponded at a crucial juncture in our history to the generation to which I belong.
My only ambition has always been and will continue to contribute to the welfare and progress in freedom of all Spaniards.
I want the best for Spain, to which I have devoted my entire life and in whose service I have put all my skills, my enthusiasm and my work.
My son Felipe, heir to the throne, embodies stability, which is a hallmark of the monarchy.
When last January I turned seventy-six years time to prepare the relief in a few months to make way for who is best placed to ensure that stability I considered reached.
The Prince of Asturias has the maturity, preparation and sense of responsibility necessary to assume full guarantees the Head of State and open a new era of hope in which the experience and the drive to a new generation combined. Count for this, I'm sure, with the support will always have from Princess Letizia.
Therefore, guided by the conviction of providing the best service to the Spanish and once recovered both physically and in my institutional activity, I have decided to end my reign and abdicate the Crown of Spain, so that the Government and the Parliament is provided to the effectiveness of succession in accordance with constitutional provisions.
So I just this morning to officially inform the President.
I wish to express my gratitude to the Spanish people, all people who have incarnated the powers and state institutions during my reign and all who have helped me with generosity and loyalty to fulfill my duties.
And my gratitude to the Queen, whose cooperation and generous support have never failed me.
I keep and will always keep Spain in the depths of my heart.
traslation: Belén Zapata