October 18, 2017

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Viva Mexico! 207th Anniversary of the Mexican Independence

By Catherine van der Loos.

On the occasion of the 207th anniversary of the Independence of Mexico, the nation’s recently appointed Ambassador to the Netherlands, H.E. Mr. Edgar Elías Azar, and Mrs. Patricia Atala Seman, hosted a festive reception on Tuesday, September 12, at the official residence in Wassenaar.

For additional Kim Vermaat’s pictures, please open the following link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/121611753@N07/albums/72157686576376511

Mexican Ambassador H.E. Mr. Edgar Elías Azar, cutting the magnificent multi tiered and multi-layered ” Independence Cake”.

Mexico’s Independence Day commemorates September 16, 1810, known as “Grito de Dolores” or “Cry of Dolores.”  The battle cry of freedom, was first called for by the Roman Catholic priest and revolutionary leader Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, a Creole, remembered for having called his small band of followers to rise up against colonial rule and the Spanish-born gachupín (ruling class) elite.

H.E. Mrs. Sabine Nölke, Ambassador of Canada together with the host Mrs. Patricia Atala Seman.

From the pulpit of his humble Guanajuato village church, he exhorted the mostly poor Indian and mestizo community to take up arms in open rebellion against their European oppressors in what was to become one of Mexico’s most famous speeches.  The speech stirred the soul of a nation, becoming the stuff of legend and it still retains an almost mythical status in the hearts and minds of the Mexican people.

Mexicans celebrate their Independence Day with fireworks, food, flags, brass bands and decorations. People take to the streets and crowds fill the main plazas (public squares) of cities, towns and villages to hear their elected officials re-enact “El Grito.”

Senior politicians, standing in for Hidalgo, publicly address the people in a “Call and Reponse ritual” which is widely repeated across the country. In Mexico City, it is a tradition for the President to stand in for Hidalgo. In this role, he calls out for Mexico’s freedom and independence by ceremoniously ringing a bell: the very bell rung by Hidalgo when he awakened a people on the same September day in 1810.

Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, H.E. Abdulaziz Abohaimed with the Ambassador of Mexico.

Here in The Hague, H.E. Elias Azar, welcomed some two hundred or more guests, including diplomats from nearly every country with diplomatic mission in the Netherlands, high level Dutch officials, judges, politicians, artists, journalists and numerous other friends of Mexico to celebrate Mexico’s Independence Day on September 12th  with him.

H.E Ambassador Mr. Ahmad Nazri Yusof of Malaysia and a colleague together with the Ambassador of Bangladesh, H.E. Sheik Mohammed Belal.

Mariachis entertained the large crowds assembled both indoors and out throughout evening.

Guests were invited to sample a wide selection of tequilas, Corona beer, and very particular Mexican wines. The traditional buffet included tacos, soft tortillas prepared outdoors in the traditional manner, and guacamole, known across the world as a fiesta favorite with guests at every Mexican inspired celebration.

H.E. Mr Eduardo Rodriguez Veltze, Ambassador of Bolivia and H.E. Mrs Soraya Elena Alvarez Nunez, Ambassador of Cuba.

The large crowd immediately fell silent when an utterly magnificent multi tiered and multi-layered cake was dramatically rolled, with great aplomb, into the residence’s grand reception hall.

Ambassador Azar to the opportunity to briefly address his guests before cutting the colorful “Independence Day” cake covered with a deep azure blue marzipan and decorated with colorful zoomorphic and floral creations.

In a show of warm Mexican hospitality, the ambassador, and his spouse, personally served the artistic cake to their guests as they were serenaded by Mariachis. Viva México!

In addition to his appointment as Ambassador to the Netherlands, H.E. Azar, is also the Permanent representative of Mexico to the OPCW, having presented his credentials to the Director-General on June 28, 2017.

He has published several books and has served the public for more than forty years. His work in the courts spans more than thirty years and before his appointment as Ambassador to the Netherlands, H.E. Azar was President of the Supreme Court of Mexico for nine years. He only resigned when his President, Enrique Pena Nieto named him as Ambassador to the Netherlands.

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