Follow Christiane on social media:

On Twitter + Facebook + Instagram Amanpour producers on Twitter

What time is Amanpour on CNN?

Check showtimes to see when Amanpour is on CNN where you are. Or watch online.

Check showtimes to see when Amanpour is on CNN where you are. Or watch online.

Juan Carlos kept Spain ‘from extremism,’ Constantine II says

June 2nd, 2014
03:40 PM ET

By Mick Krever, CNN

Spain’s King Juan Carlos, who announced Monday he would abdicate, prevented the country from falling prey to extremism and made sure it remained democratic, Constantine II, former king of Greece, told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour.

“His legacy is very, very important,” Constantine II, who is Juan Carlos’ brother-in-law, said. “He went through a very difficult period to do that. But I was convinced that he would overcome all the difficulties, and he has done that.”

The monarch will step down after 40 years on the throne and hand power to his 46-year-old son, Crown Prince Felipe.

“Although I'm not party to his decision,” Constantine II said, “I suspect that he considered that forty years is quite substantial.”

“And so the difficulty is to find the right moment; I believe that he has done that. He has found the right moment.”

In 1969, Juan Carlos was designated successor to the dictator Francisco Franco; when Franco died in 1975, he successfully steered his country back to democracy.

“I can tell you that Franco must have been – if we look at the history books – the only historical autocrat who prepared the future of his country.”

“And King Juan Carlos has not only proved that he kept Spain democratic; but he also made Spain with the support of the elected government a very, very strong, democratic country for Europe.”

He has not, however, been immune to scandal. Just two years ago, with the country deep in economic malaise, he went on an elephant-hunting trip to Africa.

“I don't know the details of it,” Constantine II said. “But as I don't hunt myself in Africa or hunt wild animals like that – it's very difficult to judge. But in any case, he got over it. And I don't think he will ever do that again.”

Is it time, Amanpour asked, for monarchies to be faded out writ large?

“That can only happen if the people of the different countries that have a constitutional monarchy don't want it anymore.”

Many European countries, he said, are democratic, successful – and have monarchies.

“In Belgium and Holland, they are all the same; in Norway, Sweden, they all have extremely young people running their countries and young monarchs.”

“Countries are still democratic and extremely well oriented.”

Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Greece • Latest Episode • Spain
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. Kostas*

    You realize , of course , that Juan Carlos is married to Constantine's sister, Sofia...

    June 2, 2014 at 7:05 pm | Reply
  2. Trang Brasuell

    You really should get involved in a tournament for example of the most effective blogs on the web. I am going to recommend this website!

    December 20, 2020 at 5:19 pm | Reply
  3. Reyes Santiesteban

    Today, with the fast chosen lifestyle that everyone leads, credit cards have a big demand in the economy. Persons from every area are using the credit card and people who not using the card have prepared to apply for one. Thanks for sharing your ideas on credit cards.

    January 7, 2021 at 3:32 am | Reply
  4. Evangeline Beisel

    I really enjoy looking at on this web site, it has got fantastic content. "The living is a species of the dead and not a very attractive one." by Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche.

    January 11, 2021 at 1:01 am | Reply
  5. Rory Kaszton

    You could certainly see your skills within the work you write. The arena hopes for even more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. All the time go after your heart.

    January 12, 2021 at 12:07 am | Reply
  6. Cecille Mcghin

    I am extremely impressed with your writing skills and also with the layout on your weblog. Is this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself? Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it is rare to see a great blog like this one today..

    January 28, 2021 at 10:00 pm | Reply
  7. ClarkMak

    k1ns8 9l2ek r8rb

    March 1, 2021 at 11:20 pm | Reply
  8. Joleen Klay

    March 4, 2021 at 10:21 am | Reply

Post a comment


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.