By Brian O'Malley • 12 October 2022 • 16:50
The Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, arrived seconds later than the King and Queen of Spain to Plaza de Lima, Madrid, disturbing the protocol which requires the royals to be the last arrivals to the 12 October parade. Sánchez was received by the public with whistles and calls to resign.
The royals’ car arrived minutes after 11:00 and seconds later the Prime Minister arrived, during which time a Royal House staff member was heard saying “don’t open the door yet as the president isn’t there.”
The hundreds of people waiting since early morning at the sides of Paseo de la Castellana, hailed the arrival of don Felipe and doña Leticia with cheers and applause.
Not so with Sánchez, who despite timing his arrival to coincide with the arrival of the monarchs, didn’t escape the whistles and heckling of spectators.
Also defence minister Margarita Robles was heckled, while walking from the Ministry to the ceremonial stand. Unrelated to todays events, the Spanish defence minister has recently sent off an assistance convoy towards Ukraine.
After receiving military honours, King Felipe VI reviewed the troops before the parade began.
The parade included more than 4,000 soldiers marching through Paseo de la Castellana as well as 150 vehicles and 86 aircraft, which marks a return to pre-pandemic numbers.
Most of the government ministers were present as well as the regional presidents, excepting the traditional absentees from Catalonia, Aragón and the Basque Country.
The parade started with a flag bearing parachute jump, the solemn raising of the and a memorial to those who died for the country. Then the air parade starts closed by the Patrulla Águila streaming the colours of the Spanish flag over the capital.
The 12th of October, or Día de la Hispanidad (formerly named Día de la Raza) is Spain’s national holiday, celebrating the discovery of América and the common heritage of the Spanish speaking nations.
The holiday often is combined with 11 October, celebrating the Guardia Civil’s Patron Saint, whose feast day is also on 12 October.
Just yesterday, the coronation of Britain’s own king Charles III was announced to take place on 6 May 2023.
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