King Felipe VI and Queen Leticia led the Madrid commemoration of Spain´s Armed Forces Day this week.
The commemoration with the traditional homage to the fallen, took place with other leading dignitaries including Madrid´s regional premier Isabel Diaz Ayuso, the Minister of Defence Margarita Robles and the Mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida.
The military parade which had been reduced in size due to the present Covid related restrictions, included marching contigents from all three branches of the armed forces including the Royal Guard and Spanish Legion.
This year, the armed forces contribution to the fight against Covid-19 took centre stage under Operación Balmis which has seen specialist units deployed to provide assistance in delivering vaccines across the country.
Armed Forces Day has been commemorated since the post-Franco constitution was introduced in 1978.
As in previous years the homage to the fallen of Spain took place at the monument and eternal flame in the Plaza de Lealtad.
The monument had been built at the site of the executions committed by Napoleon´s troops in the aftermath of the Dos De Mayo uprising in 1808.
The day has a long association with San Fernando, whose saint´s day, falls today, Sunday 30th May.
As a 13th century Castilian king, Fernando is credited with playing a major part in the Reconquista and the expansion of the Christian kingdom of Castille into Al-Andalus including the conquest of Cordoba and Sevilla.
He is buried in the Cathedral of Seville and where his incorrupted body can still be seen.
He was canonized as St. Fernando by Pope Clement X in 1671.