Spain's king gets spine surgery
It has not been a good year for the king, who has largely been admired for his role in helping steer Spain to democracy after a long period of military dictatorship under General Francisco Franco.
The monarch's son-in-law, Inaki Urdangarin, who is married to the king's second daughter, Princess Cristina, is under investigation on suspicion of having used his position to embezzle several million dollars in public contracts assigned to a supposedly nonprofit foundation he set up.
And Juan Carlos was vilified last year after breaking his hip while on a luxurious African safari to hunt elephants at a time when ordinary Spaniards were being buffeted by an economy entering its second recession in three years.
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