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Last Updated: Thursday, 14 July, 2005, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
Archbishop made university fellow
The Archbishop of Canterbury
Dr Williams chatting after being made a university fellow
The Archbishop of Canterbury has been made a fellow of the University of Wales, Aberystwyth.

Dr Rowan Williams described it as a "privilege", and said the university had a special place in Welsh history.

He received his award along with 207 students collecting their degrees on Thursday.

During the award ceremony, Dr Williams led a two-minute silence in remembrance of the victims of the London bombings.

Speaking about being made a fellow after the ceremony at the university's Great Hall, the Archbishop said: "I feel like it's a huge privilege.

"I am very conscious Aberystwyth is not only the mother college of the universities, but its history is bound up with aspirations about education.

"It has a particularly special place in the history of Wales and my own history."

The Archbishop of Canterbury
Dr Williams getting his graduation ceremony robe on Thursday morning

Of his links with Aberystwyth, he added: "I used to come here quite regularly when working in Wales.

"I preached here for the millennium in one of the chapels here. I'm no stranger and my first lecture I ever gave in Welsh, I gave in Aberystwyth and a very frightening experience it was."

Dr Williams also answered questions about the London bombings.

He said: "I feel we might have seen it coming and in a way we did at some time, but it was impossible to predict.

"The anxiety, of course, is the knowledge that it seems that it is British-born people who are responsible and it's just a reminder that terrorism does not know any boundaries."

Asked whether it was harder for people to accept that the bombers were British, he added: "I think emotionally it makes it harder for people and the trouble about that is that it can encourage the sort of mindless backlash that occurs in some quarters of the Muslim community."


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