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King and Queen of Spain preside over 98th annual ABC International Journalism Awards

Their Majesties King Felipe and Queen Letizia of Spain were on hand this week to honour the winners of the journalistic prizes awarded by the newspaper ABC, which recognises excellence in the fields of journalism and photography in the previous year. This year’s winners included:

Gregorio Marañón who was awarded the Mariano de Cavia for his article “La desmemoria que no ceesa” published in the newspaper “El País” on December 28, 2017. The Mariano de Cavia award recognises an article published in the previous year. The prize jury said that: “the author places value on reciprocal tolerance and understanding, in an article that claims the best Spain and the work of national reconciliation of the Transition”.

Pilar de Yarza Mompeón, president of the “Heraldo de Aragón”, won the Luca de Tena Prize for embodying “the spirit of the classic families of editors, core to many of the best initiatives of the Spanish press.” The Luca de Tena award recognises an “outstanding journalistic career in the defence of the values that inspire the founding principles of ABC: ethical rigour, literary requirement and informative independence.” de Yarza Mompeón was recognised for modernising the Heraldo de Aragón and turning it into the important media company that it is today.

Jesús Fernández Salvadores was granted the Mingote Award for the photograph “El infierno provocado”, published in the “Diario de León” on August 23, 2017. The Mingote prize recognises alternatively a joke, caricature or drawing and photography. The jury said: “In August of 2017, one of the many recurrent forest fires that hit the Spanish summers forced the evacuation of two small towns, Santa Eulalia de la Cabrera and Villarino, to the west of León, there were dramatic scenes and there was the camera of Jesús Fernández Salvadores to perpetuate them.”

Their Majesties presented the prizes (a bronze statuette of the sculptor Onieva) to the honourees before King Felipe gave a short speech about ABC, calling it “the house of memory” and acknowledging the publication’s 116th birthday next month, saying that it still tells the story of Spain with rigour every day, and really – with its digital edition – 24 hours a day now. He stressed that: “ABC’s formula of success is sophisticated, it is composed of varied ingredients. I had to stay with the essential; I would choose permanent loyalty to its values: very prominently the defence of Spain, its unity and its constitutional principles, our rights and freedoms.”

The King finished by saying that “we need big newspapers, like ABC. We need journalists and editors committed to the search for truth and capable of exposing it with freedom and without pressure. We need free, prosperous and high-quality media, loyal newspapers that report facts [but also have] freedom in their opinions, in Spain. Fortunately, we have them, and I trust that we will know how to care for and preserve them because they are the mirror of our lives, the album of our memory and sometimes even a bastion in defence of freedom.”

Following the awards ceremony, the King, Queen, honourees and guests attended a celebratory dinner.

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