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Prince Charles arrives in Ecuador

Source ITN

Updated on 16 March 2009

The Prince of Wales has arrived in Ecuador ahead of a tour of the world famous Galapagos Islands.

Charles flew to the capital Quito with the Duchess of Cornwall for a brief meeting with senior government officials and to have his chartered corporate jet decontaminated.

The outside of the Airbus 8319 was disinfected by staff from Mariscal Sucre International Airport to prevent harmful organisms and germs being brought onto Galapagos.

The wildlife on the 19 major and more than 100 smaller islands that make up the volcanic archipelago were studied by 19th century scientist Charles Darwin and helped him develop his revolutionary Theory on The Evolution of Life.

The islands lie just over 600 miles from the Ecuadorian mainland and have been described as a "living museum and showcase of evolution".

A colourful honour guard was waiting to greet the Royal couple when they arrived in the centre of Quito which at 2,800m above sea level is the world's second-highest capital after Bolivia's La Paz.

Soldiers in a ceremonial uniform of bright blue jackets carrying large pikes lined a vivid red carpet which led to the entrance of the presidential Carondelet Palace in the heart of the city's historic old quarter.

The Prince held discussions with Ecuador's vice president Lenin Moreno which lasted around 30 minutes.

© Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

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