President Ion Iliescu said he would not intervene to change the government decision to refuse the exiled king a visa. The ex-king, Mr Iliescu said, was 'a foreign citizen' who would need a visa and would have to give a good reason to get one.
In a letter to supporters, the exiled king said his trip was no threat to the government: 'I will arrive as a Romanian who does not intend to contest the present constitutional order.' But Mr Iliescu said the ex-king could no longer address the Romanian people as though he were talking down from a throne. 'In Romania there is only one sovereign, the Romanian people,' Mr Iliescu said.
The ex-king drew large crowds in 1992 on his only officially sanctioned visit to the former Communist country since he was expelled by the Soviet-installed government in 1947. A return seems certain to provoke a confrontation with the government.Reuse content