Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander II and Crown Princess Katherine, together with Mr Dragomir Acovic, Chairman of the Crown Council, attended today in Marseille a Commemorative ceremony on 80th Anniversary of tragic assasination of HM King Alexander I of Yugoslavia and French Foreign Minister Mr Louis Barthou. Crown Prince Alexander II was a guest of the French Government, and his host was HE Mr Harlem Désir, Secretary of State for European Affairs. Commemoration was attended by Serbian official delegation, led by Mr Radoslav Pavlovic, councilor tp the President of Serbia.
Crown Prince addressed his hosts and great number of citizens in fluent French saying: “Political history of Serbia, and then Yugoslavia of the first half of 20th century was marked by an efforts of then regent and after a King Alexander Karadjordjevic. He took responsibility for the destiny of Serbia in the eve of the Great War, and ran the state with wisdom during four years of fighting, suffering and exile, and gave huge contribution to the fact that a new state has been founded above all on tradition of Serbian democracy and political tradition. Efforts of King Alexander I the Unifier, as his contemporary have called him, to build a common state of South Slavic people on Serbian tradition of Parliamentary democracy of French type, were the root cause of his tragic death. By bravely fighting all attempts to undermine the state foundations on national or ideological basis, the King became a symbol of the state. All enemies of Yugoslavia, in Zagreb, Moscow or Rome, saw him as a major obstacle for destruction or division of the state. King Alexander tried that Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenians first, and then Yugoslavia, keep alliances made during the war, with France above all. The death of King Alexander and Louis Barthou marked without any doubt of policy based on experience from the Great War. Policy of backing down to totalitarian regimes in the heart of Europe and in the East led to a new war, whose first victim was the King and Unifier of Yugoslavia, Alexander Karadjordjevic.”
Crown Prince Alexander II, Minister Désir and Mr Pavlovic laid wreaths on the monument to King Alexander and Louis Barthou and that put flowers on the plaques at very place of assassination and toured a Museum where burial mask of HM King Alexander I, grandfather of HRH Crown Prince Alexander II, has been kept.
Crown Prince Alexander II was welcomed by great number of Serbs who live in France, together with many French citizens who still cherish friendship between our two countries and keep memories of late King Alexander I.
His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander II will lay a wreath at the tomb of his grandfather, King Alexander I at the Royal Mausoleum of St. George Church in Oplenac this evening on 6 pm, and after that on 7 pm he will officially open an exhibition at the Royal Palace in Belgrade, on the 80th Anniversary of assassination of HM King Alexander I the Unifier.