Seven ambassadors designated by their States as national representatives in Spain handed over their credentials to King Felipe VI at a ceremony held at the Royal Palace in Madrid.
The accredited ambassadors are the representatives of
- Antigua and Barbuda, Dario Item;
- the State of Kuwait, Ayadah M. A. Alsaidi;
- the Republic of Costa Rica, Ana Helena Chacón Echevarría;
- the Republic of Uzbekistan, Jakhongir Ganiev;
- the Democratic Republic of Congo, Louise Nzanga Ramazani;
- the Federative Republic of Brazil, Pompeu Andreucci Neto;
- the Republic of Senegal, Mariame Sy Epse Sy.
The presentation of credentials to the Head of State is a prerequisite for the full incorporation of ambassadors into their respective legations. The ceremony dates back to the eighteenth century and has remained fairly intact in its development up to this day.
The seven new plenipotentiary ambassadors have moved in carriages from the Palace of Santa Cruz to the Royal Palace, escorted by the Escuadrón de la Guardia Real on horseback and the Escuadra de Batidores of the Municipal Police of Madrid.
In the Patio de la Armería, the marching band of the Royal Guard has performed the national anthems of each country.
His Majesty the King then received the ambassadors and had a brief private meeting with each of them.
Diplomatic relations between Spain and Antigua and Barbuda
Spain has established diplomatic relations with Antigua and Barbuda since 1988, so more than 30 years ago.
The bilateral relations did not use to have much value until 2014, when the then General Director for Latin America, Pablo Gómez de Olea, was in the capital Saint John’s to organize the visit the Prime Minister of Spain Mariano Rajoy. He went there to take part in the summit of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
The same thing happened then in 2006 and 2008 for the 3rd and the 4th CARICOM-Spain summits, when the then Antiguan Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer visited Madrid.
Antigua and Barbuda is a small country. That is why its foreign policy arises in terms of its international organizations’ membership (for example the United Nations system) and other regional organizations’ membership (for example CARICOM, the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States – OECS – or the Association of Caribbean States – ACS).