The Dutch monarchy was saved from falling apart in 1976 when prime minister Joop den Uyl covered up a second bribery scandal involving prince Bernhard and by soing so, enabling queen Juliana to stay on the throne, the Volkskrant reports on Thursday.
One of the paper’s journalists, Anet Bleich, today publishes a biography of the Labour prime minister and bases her claims on his personal archives.
Documents relating to the Lockheed affair – in which prince Bernhard was accused of accepting $1.1m in bribes – show he was also embroiled in a similar scandal involving plane builder Northrop, says Bleich.
But by keeping this secret, Den Uyl was able to protect queen Juliana’s position and keep Bernhard out of jail, she claims.
Had the scandal become public and Juliana been forced to resign, it could have meant the end of the Dutch monarchy, Bleich says.
This is because the royal couple’s eldest daughter, Beatrix – who is now the reigning queen – said she would not take the throne under such circumstances, the journalist explains in a video on the Volkskrant website.
Both the NRC Handelsblad and Vrij Nederland magazine have published information about the Northrop scandal in the past, news agency ANP points out.
Den Uyl died in 1987.
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