Flag of Melilla (GIF)

The flag of Melilla (Spanish: Bandera de Melilla) consists of a pale blue background with the coat of arms of Melilla in the center. It carries rich symbolism through its design and coat of arms. The pale blue background represents the city's maritime location, emphasizing its connection to the Mediterranean Sea. At the heart of the flag is the coat of arms of the Ducal House of Medina Sidonia, which is also the coat of arms of Melilla. This house played a significant financial role in the military operation that led to the capture of Melilla in 1497. The coat of arms itself features an azure shield with two gold and red checkered baskets, each holding seven green serpents. It is also surrounded by the coats of arms of the Kingdom of Castile and the Kingdom of Leon, underscoring the historical influence of these regions. A ducal crown tops the shield, with a representation of Guzmán el Bueno poised to throw a dagger from the castle of Tarifa, signifying strength and determination. At the top of Tarifa Castle, a ribbon bears the motto "Praeferre Patriam Liberis Parentem Decet" (Latin: "It befits a parent to put her homeland before her children"), emphasizing the city's commitment to its homeland. The shield is supported by the columns of the Strait of Hercules, with the inscription "Non Plus Ultra" (Latin: "There is nothing beyond"), highlighting the edge of the known world in antiquity. Finally, at the base of the shield, a dragon adds a touch of myth and legend, contributing to the overall emblematic richness of the flag.

Adopted:March 13, 1995
Flag image:Animated GIF (25 frames looped)
Flag emoji code:🇪🇦

Melilla is a Spanish autonomous city located on the northern coast of Africa, bordered by Morocco. With an area of approximately 12.3 square kilometers, it is one of two permanently inhabited Spanish cities on mainland Africa, the other being Ceuta. Melilla has a unique position as a strategic and commercial hub, serving as a key gateway between Europe and Africa. The city boasts a diverse cultural heritage, influenced by its long history of Phoenician, Roman, Byzantine, and Arab rule. It has a population of around 84,689 (2019) people, comprising a mix of Spanish, Berber, and Sephardic Jewish communities, resulting in a rich cultural fusion. Melilla's economy is driven by trade, tourism, and fishing, while its status as an autonomous city grants it a special administrative and political framework within the Spanish system. The city is known for its unique architecture, blending Moorish, Spanish, and modern influences, and its vibrant festivals and traditions reflect the multicultural fabric of its society.

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