Citizens of the principality of Liechtenstein on July 1, 2012, voted to reject a proposal that would have abolished the ruling prince’s right to veto the results of popular referendums, which would have in effect, lead to a curtailment of the royal family’s powers. The turnout was 82.9 percent and of that, 76.1 percent rejected the proposal. Things came to a head last year, when Crown Prince Alois of Liechtenstein had made it known that if the citizens of Liechtenstein approved the legalization of abortion, he would block it. Prior to the vote on July 1st, Prince Alois had announced in Parliament that he might likely withdraw from official duties. This was interpreted to mean that the ruling family was prepared to exit the country and institute a self-imposed exile from the wealthy principality. After the official outcome of the vote became known, Prince Hans Adam, Crown Prince Alois’s father said, “I want to thank you dearly that with such a convincing ‘yes’ you have agreed to continue the 300-year-old partnership between the people and the royal house, which been so successful up to now”. Both princes were greeted with cheers when they arrived in Vaduz, the capital, to thank their people for the vote of confidence in the royal family. The Liechtenstein royals own one of the world’s great art collections in private hands and Forbes magazine has estimated the royal family’s worth at some $3.5 billion. Photos by Getty Images and AP.