The mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, was in Moscow last Sunday to receive the Alexander Pushkin medal on behalf of the city from Russian President, Vladimir Putin. The ceremony at the Kremlin is an annual event to celebrate Russia's National Unity Day.
The president acknowledged Malaga's support for Russian culture and congratulated the city on the success of the high-profile branch of the Russian State Museum from St Petersburg, which opened on the Costa del Sol in 2015. Since then, it has had over half a million visitors through its doors and has showcased 18 exhibitions.
De la Torre expressed his gratitude on receiving this award for the Russian Museum in Malaga, saying that the museum itself is a "home for Russian art in the Mediterranean". He added that it is the sharing of culture between Russia and Spain that means the two will always "coexist with peace, looking towards the future".
National Unity Day, a public holiday, was started in 2005 and marks the 4 November 1612 when Polish troops were expelled from Moscow. The medal is named after Alexander Pushkin, father of modern Russian literature. De la Torre was among other recipients of the award at the prestigious event.
Last year the mayor was awarded Officer of the French Legion of Honour for his support in the opening of Paris's Pompidou Centre on the Costa.