Europe NewsOtto von Habsburg turns 95By DPANov 19, 2007, 16:26 GMT
Vienna - Otto von Habsburg, son of Austria's last emperor, turns 95 on Tuesday.
Bearing the full title Franz Joseph Otto Robert Maria Anton Karl Max Heinrich Sixtus Xaver Felix Renatus Ludwig Gaetan Pius Ignatius Habsburg, Imperial Prince, Archduke of Austria and Prince of Hungary, he was born on November 20, 1912 at the heart of the then-Austrian empire.
Four years later his father Karl's accession to the Austrian throne made young Otto von Habsburg crown price, expecting one day to inherit the Austro-Hungarian empire.
But history, and Austria's loss of World War I changed not only Europe's fate, but also the fate of the Habsburg family.
The Habsburgs were forced to abdicate in 1919, but the dynasty's scion regarded himself in line for the throne for many years to come. Only in 1961 Otto renounced his claim to the throne, but none of these adversities prevented him from embarking on a political career.
Habsburg served as a member of the European parliament for the conservative German CSU for 20 years. From the 1930s onwards, the trained lawyer, who holds Austrian, Hungarian, German and Croatian citizenship, was an outspoken opponent of Nazi Germany.
During the Second World War he lobbied in the United States to re- establish Austria as a state. From the mid-1950s onwards Habsburg settled in Bavaria in southern Germany.
Since his retirement from politics he has been a prolific writer, focussing on European issues.
© 2007 dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur