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King and Queen of Spain present National Culture Awards

Their Majesties King Felipe and Queen Letizia of Spain presided over and presented the National Culture Awards yesterday at the Cathedral of Santa Maria and San Julián in Cuenca. The awards are a “recognition of society for the contribution to the enrichment of the cultural heritage of Spain,” according to Casa Real.

The National Culture Awards are granted by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

The King and Queen pictured with the winners. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

King Felipe spoke at the ceremony where he told those assembled that “culture means creativity and imagination, it means history and art, literature and languages, traditions and innovation, but in order to express culture needs freedom, a freedom that cost a lot the Spaniards to achieve and made possible our common desire to live together in democracy, a democratic coexistence that was the fruit of a deep, intense and felt desire for each of the Spaniards, and an aspiration achieved after many sacrifices and efforts and thanks to the commitment and generosity of all. A great collective victory that can not be waived.”

His Majesty addressing those at the ceremony on Wednesday before handing out the awards. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

He continued saying, “That coexistence, in a constitutional democracy like ours, is only possible if the laws that regulate and organise it are met and fulfilled by citizens and institutions if the rights and freedoms of citizens are protected and respected by the powers.”

Her Majesty presenting an award to Juan Hidalgo Codorniú. © Casa de S.M. el Rey

The King also called the artists who have promoted the cultural heritage of Spain as “guardians of creative beauty and spearhead of a singular excellence that contributes to educating the sensibility of the citizens and to forging the best principles.”

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