21 de septiembre de 2018
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Spanish monarchs receive San Antonio's Keys to the Missions

San Antonio, Texas, Jun 17 (efe-epa).- King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain on Sunday received the Keys to the Missions of San Antonio from the Texas city's mayor, Ron Nirenberg, in recognition of their visit for the 300th anniversary of the city's founding by Spanish friars.

San Antonio, Texas, Jun 17 (efe-epa).- King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain on Sunday received the Keys to the Missions of San Antonio from the Texas city's mayor, Ron Nirenberg, in recognition of their visit for the 300th anniversary of the city's founding by Spanish friars.

The welcoming ceremony was held at the Governor's Palace with the monarchs in attendance along with Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell.

This is the first occasion on which the central Texas city has bestowed the Keys to the Missions, a distinction that was established after Unesco in 2015 declared San Antonio's five Franciscan settlements to be a World Heritage Site.

The first mission built was San Antonio de Valero, in 1718, and later the missions of San Jose (1720) and Concepcion, San Juan and Espada (1731) were added.

Nirenberg said that Felipe and Letizia's visit is an opportunity to strengthen mutual roots, friendship and ties between San Antonio and Spain.

He also noted that Spain's former monarchs - Felipe's parents King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia - visited the Texas city in 1987, adding that families from the Canary Islands were the first settlers in what is now San Antonio.

The ceremony to present the Keys to the Missions to the Spanish monarchs, and to unveil a commemorative plaque, was attended by local authorities and San Antonio Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller, along with Canary Islands president Fernando Clavijo, who is accompanying Felipe and Letizia on their US tour, as well as Spain's envoy to Washington, Pedro Morenes.

Felipe and Letizia arrived in San Antonio from New Orleans, where they also attended the commemoration of the 300th anniversary of that city's founding.

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