Thousands of royalist supporters attended the Carlist rally on the Montejurra peak overshadowing the norther Spanish town of Estella on Sunday (6 May).
Thousands of royalist supporters attended the Carlist rally on the Montejurra peak overshadowing the norther Spanish town of Estella on Sunday (6 May). Among them was Princess Irene, wife of the Carlist pretender to the Spanish throne.
The Dutch-born Princess, who is married to Prince Carlos Hugo Bourbon-Parma, slipped illegally into Spain to attend the royalist rally. She told some 8,000 followers that "a social revolution should be carried out in Spain to change the unjust regime."
At the rally, a declaration of Carlist aims was also read. It included the setting up of a democratic front, the removal of the Franco regime, and amnesty for all political prisoners and exiles within the framework of a Federation of social republics.
Montejurra is the site of a major Carlist victory in a royalist war during the last century. The 2,000 foot (850 metres) mountain also stands as a monument to the thousands of Carlists who died fighting for Francisco Franco, during the 1936-1939 Spanish Civil War.
But in recent years, the royal dissidents have become out-spokenly critical of the Franco regime, and the Carlist royal family has been exiled from the country for voicing its opposition.
The civil governor of Navarre province authorised the religious part of this annual rally, but forbade any political acts. The Carlists, however, as in past years, ignored the ban.
Following the rally, a group of 300 Carlists staged a minor demonstration in Estella's main square. A small group of armed civil guards was present, but watched without intervening as the demonstrators chanted "Franco-traitor."