Monday, January 6, 2014

Michael's aunts may be sent into exile

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 January 6, 1948

Princesses Elisabeth and Ileana of Romania are expected to be sent into exile, following their nephew, King Michael, although the two women "collaborated so closely with the Russians that they became known as the King's 'Red Aunts,'" reports the New York Times.

It is understood that the Romanian government has ordered the two princesses to leave the country.

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Princess Elisabeth, 52, is the former wife of the late King George II of the Hellenes.  They divorced in 1935, and she returned to live in Romania.  Her younger sister, Princess Ileana, is the wife of Archduke Anton of Austria, and the mother of six young children.

Only a few days ago, Premier Petru Groza said the two Princesses would remain in the country, "as they were free to do so."  Soon afterward, the Communists decided that the two women "must go and told them to liquidate their assets."

Negotiations are "in progress" for the sale of the Princesses' real estate and "industrial investments," and for the members of their staff "whom they wish to take with them from Romania."

Their passports approved by the Government will be released on Thursday. and a special train "bearing the last of Romania's royal family" will probably depart on Saturday.

Princess Elisabeth and Princess Ileana are the sisters of former King Carol.  Ileana;'s husband has been accused of collaborating with the Germans, but he "has never been tried."

Although the Romanian newspapers and radio have not yet reported that King Michael has left the country, the Bucharest newspapers "continue to report scenes of wild rejoicing" throughout the country over the proclamation of the 'Popular Republic.'"

The New York Times' Bucharest-based reporter notes that he has not seen any "evidence of great rejoicing" or "fervent enthusiasm," but it is clear that the "centers of resistance" are afraid to show their opposition to the new regime.  

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