7 OCTOBER 2003
Spain's Queen Sofia received a colourful welcome from some indigenous tribesmen when she arrived in Brazil on Monday.

The queen was welcomed by Chief Aritana of the Yawalapiti tribe when she touched down in the city of Brasilia. And members of the Yawalapiti, who hail from the Upper Xingu region in northern Brazil, performed a traditional dance in her honour.

Sofia also chatted with Chief Aritana about indigenous handicrafts and the issues affecting indigenous peoples in the country.

The 65-year-old is visiting Brasilia in her capacity as honorary chairperson of the International Microcredit Forum. The summit aims to help eradicate world poverty by providing credit for development projects in poorer countries.

"I hope that this formidable tool in the fight against poverty, together with the application of other policies and development projects, will come to fruition as quickly as possible," she said.

"Microcredit is fundamentally based in the idea of solidarity, and the government of my country could not neglect to support such an effective means to help the world's poorest people. Spain is unequivocally committed to the fight against poverty."

Sofia had her hands full when Chief Aritana showed her some traditional tribal handicrafts
Photo: AFP
Click on photos to enlarge

The Queen inspected some of the Yawalapiti's fancy footwork when she arrived in the country
Photo: AFP

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