Press Release
June 29, 2006

Angara: 4th RP-Spanish Friendship Day celebrated today

The Philippines today celebrates the 4th Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day simultaneously with Spain, marking the cultural and historical ties, and enduring friendship between the Philippines and its former colonizer.

"The celebration is doubly significant this year because for the first time, Spain itself is hosting the celebration in the province of Palencia," said Angara, who was invited special guest in this year's commemoration in Spain.

In 2003, Angara authored in the Senate the law creating the Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day and setting its observance on June 30 of every year.

The Palencia celebration's focal point is the signing of a sisterhood agreement between the president of Palencia, Spain and Governor Bellaflor Angara Castillo of Aurora, Philippines. At the same time, Palencia will honor both Senator Angara and Governor Angara Castillo by making them Adopted Son and Daughter respectively.

Baler will celebrate this year's Philippine-Spain Friendship day with a conference organized by the UP Department of History, various cultural presentations, turnover of books, and an exhibit on 19 th century Filipino-Hispanic architecture at the Museo de Baler.

Angara noted that four years after its first commemoration, the Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day celebration has extended from its base in Baler, Aurora to other places such as Iloilo, Cavite, Bulacan, Zamboanga and Manila.

The event honors the day in 1898 when the Philippines, through a decree by President Emilio Aguinaldo, who upon learning of the gallant stand of besieged Spanish soldiers which lasted for 337 days in the church of Baler, decreed that they were to be regarded as friends, not as prisoners of war and be given safe passage and returned to their homeland.

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