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Palabras de Su Alteza Real el Príncipe de Asturias en el Marae

Rotorua, 04.07.1990

T

​ena Koutou,Tena Koutou,Tena Koutou,Katoa!

Governor General,

Distinguished representatives of the Maori community:

Es tradición de vuestro pueblo que las primeras palabras de aquél al que recibís  sean en su lengua vernácula. Nada más grato para mí que hacerla así para expresaras mi agradecimiento y satisfacción por esta maravillosa ceremonia de bienvenida.

I feel privileged to be received in this historic Marae of Rotorua, one hundred and fifty years after the signature of the Treaty of Waitangi.

I have already,(since my arrival in New Zealand), pointed to the fact of your country and mine being antipodes. Yet the warm reception you have given me, makes me feel that we are not really very far apart. Maybe the tales that have circulated among you, since the beginning of the nineteenth century, about the presence of mysterious Spaniards in your islands, are not such tales after all.

Perhaps there have been contacts between the Spanish and Maori peoples that have gone unrecorded by History. It would account for the similarity of words like "dog" or "eat", which in Spanish and Maori sound very much alike.

Anyway, whatever contacts we may have had up to now, I am sure they will increase in the near future, as communications improve and our world gets smaller every day.

My presence here today, two years after the King and Queen, my parents, carne on a State visit, shows the interest that we in Spain have in strengthening the links between the peoples of Spain and New Zealand, whether Maori or Pakeha.

I am sure that you share that interest, and I hope that an ever-increasing number of New Zealanders will visit us.

I like to think that any time is a good time to visit Spain, but I should mention that in two years' time, we shall commemorate the Fifth Centenary of the discovery of America and we shall host the Olympic Games in Barcelona and the 1992 Universal Exhibition in Seville. I can promise to all those of you that come, then or whenever, the same warm reception that I am getting in New Zealand.

Again, from the bottom of my heart:

Tena Koutou, Tena Koutou, Tena Koutou, Katoa!

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