News organizations, including the New York Times and the Associated Press, are reporting that King Michael of Romania abdicated earlier today and the "Communist-dominated Government immediately proclaimed a 'People's Republic.'"
King Michael, 26, is the last surviving monarch behind the Iron Kingdom. He apparently made the decision to abdicate "suddenly," and his decision was "announced by radio to the Romanian people without warning" at 6 p.m.
His reason for abdicating was not made public.
The king returned to Romania only nine days ago from his "first trip abroad since the war." He returned to the country "determined" to fight for his throne and to obtain the Communists' permission to marry Princess Anne of Bourbon-Parma, whom he met while he was in London to attend Princess Elizabeth's wedding.
The Associated Press is reporting that a Government official told their reporter that the King was "free to live in Romania and marry Princess Anne."
The Communist takeover of Eastern European countries is now complete. Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Albania, Bulgaria and Romania are now completely under the influence of Communist governments "subservient to the Soviet Union."
King Michael was "undoubtedly loved by his people," but there have not been any "publicly known demonstrations against his removal." Government radio has reported demonstrations in favor of the new government.
The King's abdication degree stated that "because of the great political, economic and social changes effected in Romania since the war, the monarchy no longer corresponded to the present conditions of a state and thus represented a serious obstacle to the country's future development," reported the New York Times.
The Groza Government immediately proclaimed a "people's republic." The removal of the monarchy "opened great opportunities for the advancement of popular democracy and for increasing the welfare of workers, peasants and intellectuals."
The King's decision "obviously came with great speed." Members of his Court had no idea of what was happening and believed that the King would, "as usual receive all members of the foreign diplomatic corps on New Year's Day.
It is not known whether Michael will leave Romania or not. News organizations have not been able to "establish contact with members of his staff by telephone or in person."
Michael's father, former King Carol II, who lives in Estoril, Portugal, received the news of his son's excitement with "apparent satisfaction and excitement." But he refused to make any comment when he was interviewed by a reporter.
"I have always refused to make statements to the press until now as I did not want to embarrass in any way the course of events in Romania. In the view of the latest events, I feel I shall soon be able to speak freely, but this I shall do only after my son is safely out of Romania."
King Michael succeeded his father in 1940.
Princess Anne of Bourbon-Parma, who is staying with relatives in Copenhagen, has received no word from King Michael. She is believed to be engaged to Michael. She would not comment on "the news of the abdication.