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Toast by H.R.H. the Prince of Asturias at the Dinner Hosted in His Honor by the Governor of New Mexico in Santa Fe

EE.UU.(Santa Fe. Nuevo México), 05.10.2004

O

n behalf of My wife Princess Letizia, and myself, I should like first of all to thank you and Mrs. Richardson for your very warm welcome, and for your invitation to this dinner during our first visit to the United States since we were married.

I have told the Princess that, as I know from my experience of previous visits to this country, a Spaniard cannot feel like a foreigner in New Mexico. The street and town names here, as well as the language, the landscape and the architecture, and above all the people, make us feel very much at home.

The city of Santa Fe, the oldest State capital in the United States, is a reminder of the strong ties shared by New Mexico and the Spanish people and Crown for centuries.

The State of New Mexico has preserved its origins and its own identity within the great American nation. It has also set an example of how different cultural legacies? Native American, Hispanic and Anglo-Saxon? are able to live and grow together. This rich diversity can be seen in the symbols and colours of the State flag.

New Mexico has skilfully combined the continuity of tradition and the meeting of contemporary needs by ensuring the co-existence of its time-honoured handicrafts with state-of-the-art technology and research.

It is our hope that this visit will contribute to a closer relationship between Spain and the United States, and specifically between New Mexico and Spain.

This morning we were at the University of New Mexico to promote the activities of the Chair of Information Science and Technology that bears my name. Tomorrow, in the area of language and culture, we shall attend the opening ceremony of a new building at the National Hispanic Cultural Center that will also host the Cervantes Institute and a center belonging to Ministry of Education. I wish to thank you, Mr. Governor, for the support given to these institutions by the State Government of New Mexico.

This shows that we are linked not only by centuries of common history, but also by our shared will to project this relationship into the future.

Allow me to raise my glass in a toast to you and your wife, with our best wishes to you and to friendship between New Mexicans and Spaniards.

¡Por Nuevo México, por los Estados Unidos y por España!

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