Karađorđević, Prince Paul, born as Paul Karađorđević, 27-04-1893 in Saint Petersburg, was the only son of Prince Arsen, brother of King Peter I and Princess and Countess Aurora Pavlovna Demidova. He married Princess Olga of Greece and Denmark
, a sister of Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent, in 1923. King Georg VI
, as Duke of York, was best man at his wedding in Belgrade. Paul was educated at the University of Oxford, where he was a member of the exclusive Bullingdon Club, a dining club notorious for its practice of destroying restaurants’ property. His closest friends, including the American-born, naturalized British politician Chips Channon and outlook on life were said to be British. He was installed as a Knight of the Garter in 1939. On 09-10-1934, Prince Paul took the Regency after his cousin King Alexander
was assassinated in Marseille, France on 09-10-1934, age 45. Cannon died age 63 on 07-10-1958, in London. In his will, Alexander named Paul, as the first of three regents to govern until September 1941, when Alexander’s son Peter would come of age. Prince Paul, far more than Alexander, was Yugoslav rather than Serb in outlook. In its broadest outline, his domestic policy was to eliminate the heritage of the Alexandrine dictatorship centralism, censorship, and military control; and to pacify the country by solving the Serb-Croat problem. In August 1939, the Cvetkovic-Macek Agreement set up the Banovina of Croatia. The central government retained control of foreign affairs, national defense, foreign trade, commerce, transport, public security, religion, mining, weights and measures, insurance, and education policy. Croatia was to have its own legislature in Zagreb, and a separate budget. When World War II broke out, Yugoslavia declared its neutrality. On 25-03-1941, Yugoslav government signed the Tripartite Pact with significant reservations as it received three notes. The first note obliged the Axis powers to respect territorial integrity and sovereignty of Yugoslavia. In the second note the Axis promised not to ask Yugoslavia for any military assistance. In the third note they promised not to ask Yugoslavia for permission to move military forces across its territory during the war.
Two days later, Prince Paul was forcibly removed from power. From this distance, the Prince Paul’s foreign policy including the signing of the Tripartite Pact seems to have been governed by the desire to give his country as much leeway as possible in thoroughly adverse circumstances. After the fall of France and the defeat of the British, Paul saw no way of saving Yugoslavia except through adopting policies of accommodation to the Axis powers. But even under those circumstances Paul, outwardly neutral, remained determinedly pro-Allied. He aided Greece when Greece was invaded. He fostered military collaboration between the Yugoslav Army and the French. And for almost three years he parried the Axis thrust toward Yugoslavia. the remainder of the war, Prince Paul was kept, with his family, under house arrest by the British in Kenya. Princess Elizabeth, his only daughter, obtained and published information from the Special Operations Executive files in the Foreign Office in London and published them in Belgrade, in the 1990 edition of the Serbian-language biography of her father. The post-war communist authorities had Prince Paul proclaimed an enemy of the state; he was disallowed from returning to Yugoslavia and all his property was confiscated.
Death and burial ground of Karađorđević, Prince Paul of Yugoslavia..
He died in Paris on 14-09-1976, aged 83 and was buried on the cemetery Bois de Vaux in Lausanne, Switzerland. He was rehabilitated by Serbian courts in 2011.