President Barack Obama could have had the help of any translator to communicate with locals during his visit to Cuba, but he enlisted the support of someone close to his heart – his daughter Malia. The 17-year-old acted as a Spanish interpreter for her father during the visit, which marks the first time a sitting US president has been to Cuba since the 1959 revolution.
A photo shared on President Obama's official Facebook page shows the father-daughter duo laughing with a local restaurateur during a meeting on Sunday. The teenager appears confident and happy to be helping her father, as she put her high school Spanish education into use.
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Malia Obama acted as an interpreter for her father
"President Obama and Malia share a laugh as Malia interprets in Spanish for a restaurateur in Havana, Cuba, Sunday, March 20, 2016," the caption read.
Barack arrived in Cuba with his wife Michelle and two daughters Malia and Sasha, 14, on Sunday. The President has had a busy itinerary during the trip, which has included a meeting with leader Raul Castro, and a baseball game between the country's national team and the Tampa Bay Rays.
It is not surprising Barack chose to work closely with his daughter during the trip; the President has recently called the teenager "one of my best friends", and praised both Malia and her younger sister for their "extraordinary strength" and grace.
Malia recently attended her first ever state dinner
Speaking at a state dinner in honour of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau – the first that Malia and Sasha had attended – Barack gave a special mention to his two children.
"The memories for me of being a kid and not being old enough to attend these kinds of events with my father almost makes me wish I had gone through my teenage years as the child of a world leader," he said. "Almost."
"I admire you very much, both of you, for your extraordinary strength and your grace," Justin added. He also hoped that the unconventional childhoods they had experienced would, he said, give them "strength and wisdom beyond your years for the rest of your life".