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Prince Harry receives warm welcome in Chile
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Prince Harry arrived in Chile to support the United Kingdom’s interests in the region and strengthen the close ties between both countries.
A wreath laying ceremony at the monument of Chile’s founding father Bernardo O’Higgins was the first activity attended by Prince Harry during his official visit to Chile from 26 to 29 June 2014. For the past 50 years it has been a tradition that all official visitors pay their respects to the founding father of Chile as a symbol of gratitude to the host country, and Prince Harry was no exception. Presided by the Chilean Under-Secretary of Defence Marcos Robledo and Major General Leonardo Martinez, the ceremony was also attended by the British Ambassador to Chile Fiona Clouder and the Embassy’s Defence Attaché Colonel Angus MacLeod.
On the first day of his official visit Prince Harry met with President Michelle Bachelet, where he was also joined by Juan Luis Nilo, Deputy Director of Protocol of the Chilean Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The meeting was an opportunity to highlight the strong bilateral relationship between the UK and Chile.
Later in the day, Prince Harry visited the ‘Sagrada Familia’ Kindergarten in the District of Pudahuel, Santiago, which is managed by the Integra Foundation – one of the President’s official Foundations which aims to support early education. Prince Harry was accompanied by the President’s Social Director, Sebastián Dávalos, during the visit.
The Kindergarten is based in an area which has one of the largest Mapuche communities in Santiago. He joined in with children playing the pifilca - a traditional instrument in Mapuche culture, and was shown around by head-teacher Jimena Pérez, who explained that the community had just celebrated the Mapuche New Year which included ceremonies to ensure a good harvest.
In the afternoon, Prince Harry visited the Special Operations Brigade of the Chilean Military in Peldehue. During the visit Prince Harry, a serving member of the UK Armed Forces, showed his support for Chile’s contribution to UN peacekeeping missions and was briefed on the roles and military capabilities of the soldiers from the most highly trained army unit in Chile.
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