Author`s name Pravda.Ru

Spanish crown princess gives birth to baby girl

Spain's Crown Princess Letizia early Monday gave birth to a girl, who becomes second in line to the throne after her father Crown Prince Felipe, the royal palace said.

It was the first child born to the royal couple. It was not immediately known how mother and child were doing or any other details of the birth.

"Princess of Asturias has just given birth to a girl," said the Royal Palace in a mobile text message to journalists.

The baby was born about seven hours after Letizia, accompanied by her husband, entered the Ruber International Clinic in the north of Madrid on Sunday on advice from her gynecologist after having contractions. Spanish news reports said Letizia had given birth two weeks before her due date.

The new princess, whose name has yet to be announced, is second in line for the throne after Prince Felipe.

Her place in the royal succession could drop if Felipe and Letizia have any sons. The Spanish constitution now allows a female heir to the throne only if she has no brothers.

However, the girl could become the first Spanish princess to have the same right as a boy to accede to the throne and become queen.

The Socialist government is looking into changing the law under which the eldest male is automatically heir to the throne even if he has an older sister.

Letizia Ortiz became Spain's crown princess in May 2004 when she married Prince Felipe in an glamorous royal wedding ceremony.

Letizia and Felipe surprised Spaniards on Nov. 1, 2003, by announcing their engagement. Few knew that the heir to the Spanish throne had been dating a woman who was one of the country's best-known television personalities, a divorcee without royal or aristocratic links.

The tall, dashing prince met Letizia at a dinner party in late 2002 and they started dating secretly the following spring.

The Spanish royal family enjoys wide respect, with King Juan Carlos revered for his role in ushering in democracy after the death of dictator Gen. Francisco Franco in 1975 and putting down an attempted coup in 1981, AP reported. V.A.