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Princess Leonor gives speech in perfect Catalán
01 July 2020 @ 12:50

PRINCESS Leonor has stunned the public by giving a speech – without notes or autocues – in fluent catalán, the language of a region she has never lived in or been to school in.

The 14-year-old heiress to the throne joined her parents and sister, the Infanta Sofía, 13, in a video-conference to explain that this year's Princess of Girona Awards ceremony has had to be postponed due to the pandemic.

Although her 'main' title is Princess of Asturias – and Spain's national version of the Nobel Prizes take the same name – Leonor in fact holds a long list of aristocratic titles which are secondary to this, including that of Princess of Girona.

These awards, also named after her, are a smaller version of the Princess of Asturias prizes, and each year follow a different theme.

For 2020, they have focused on the main challenges faced by Spanish society, in particular children, teenagers and young adults, especially in light of the global Coronavirus outbreak.

Prizewinners this year are film director Guillermo García López, businesswoman Pepita Marín Rey-Stolle, chemist Rubén Darío Costa Riquelme, and IT pioneer Guillermo Martínez Gauna-Vivas.

Princess Leonor and the Infanta Sofía took part in last year's Princess of Girona Awards which, to celebrate their 10th anniversary, were held in Barcelona, the region's capital and Spain's second-largest city.

Although unable to do so in person before a physical audience, because of the Covid-19 crisis, this is the first time Leonor has spoken publicly in catalán.



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