• King Juan Carlos returns from exile
  • After two years away, he visits Spain
  • This is why the royal has returned

Former Spanish King Juan Carlos, 84, has been exiled in Abu Dhabi since 2020 following a financial scandal. For the first time in two years, he is returning to his home country of Spain. The Spanish royal house left a statement on its website.

Juan Carlos will be in homeland from May 19 to 23 and he wanted to inform the public. One of the reasons for his trip is to attend a sailing regatta, but he will also be meeting his family.

King Juan Carlos reunites with his family in Spain

The palace writes: "Juan Carlos plans to stay [...] in the Galician town of Sanxenxo, and on May 23 to travel to Madrid, to be with His Majesty the King, with Her Majesty Queen Sofía and other members of his family at the Palace of La Operetta. 

"That same day, His Majesty King Juan Carlos will travel back to Abu Dhabi, where he has established his permanent and stable residence."

Juan Carlos' visit to Spain may be the first of many, as the statement suggests: "This visit is part of the desire of His Majesty King Juan Carlos to travel frequently to Spain to visit family and friends, and organize his personal life and his place of residence."

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For the Spanish royals, this visit will be a real family reunion. During the two years that Juan Carlos lived in exile, he was visited by his two daughters. King Fellpe, Queen Letizia and their children, he hasn't seen since. His wife Queen Sofia, to whom he has been married for 60 years, has not yet visited in Abu Dhabi.

The former king's surprising trip to his old home probably has something to do with the end to investigations against him, including alleged money laundering. Will Juan Carlos ever fully return to Spain? It doesn't seem entirely out of the question.

In a public letter to his son Felipe in March of this year, he wrote the following: "It seems appropriate to consider my return to Spain, albeit not immediately.

"For reasons that fall within my privacy and concern only me, for the moment I prefer to continue to live permanently and steadily in Abu Dhabi, where I have found peace of mind, especially at this stage of my life."

His visit is certainly eagerly awaited by the Spanish population. After all, Juan Carlos was the king of the country for almost 40 years.