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One of the Spanish royal couples signed divorce papers on Wednesday.


The Infanta Elena de Borbon, eldest daughter of Spain's King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia, and Jaime de Marichalar formally ended 14 years of matrimony. Officially known as the Duke and Duchess of Lugo, the couple separated two years ago. Marichalar has been stripped of his title as Duke of Lugo.

According to a release distributed by the couples' lawyers - and not the royal house - the Infanta will maintain custody of the couples' two children, Felipe and Victoria. Marichalar will provide his children with a monthly stipend.

Given the royal family's ties to the Catholic church the couple will seek an annulment of their marriage directly from the Vatican. They married at the cathedral in Seville in 1995. Theirs was the first royal wedding in Spain since 1906. King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia married in exile in Athens during the Franco dictatorship.

It is unknown how quickly or whether Pope Benedict XVI will grant an annulment. It took 12 years for Pope John Paul II to annul the marriage of Princess Caroline of Monaco to Parisian banker Philippe Junot.