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Assembleia Geral das Nações Unidas
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Speech by the President of the Republic at the closure of the Colloquium “Portugal and Romania – An Eternal Recurrence”
Central University Library, Bucharest, Romania, 18 June 2015

I am delighted with the undertaking of a colloquium that proves and deepens the intense cultural relationships between two Latin countries geographically very distant within the European area. As shown here today, reciprocal interests do not recognize interests.

I record with great pleasure the large number of translations: almost two hundred books of Portuguese works, including classic and contemporary authors, translated into Romanian. There is equally continued interest in Portugal for literary production of Romanian poets, novelists and essayists.

The mutual knowledge between Portugal and Romania much benefited from the contribution of well-known Romanian intellectuals who visited Portugal. Some as diplomats, others because they found haven there during the Second World War.

Figures such as Lucian Blaga, who was a diplomat in Portugal between 1938 and 1939, or Mircea Eliade, one of the most famous intellectuals who recurred to exile in Portugal, performed a central role in the rapprochement between our peoples.

I would also underline the route of Professor Victor Buescu, whose daughter, an eminent Portuguese academician, is with us here today. In the beginning of the forties, Victor Buescu came to Portugal as lecturer in Romanian and remained in Lisbon University as a prestigious classical philologer and recognized intellectual. His works, as well as those of Professor Leonor Buescu, his wife, may be viewed in the exhibition on show in this University.

My visit here and the tribute paid to the work of translators, professors and students is equally a means to emphasize the close relation between two cultures and two languages which celebrate a common Latin heritage.

It was also in this context that I decided to decorate two individualities that have become distinguished in the continuous deepening of reciprocal knowledge between Portugal and Romania: António Canhestro Ferro, lecturer of Portuguese in Romania for over 25 years, and translator Micaela Ghitescu.

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