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Prince Philip first Royal to be awarded Order of Canada

Britain's Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (R) receives the Order of Military Merit from Governor General of Canada David Johnston, at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto April 26, 2013.

Reuters

Prince Philip has been named the first ever extraordinary companion of the Order of Canada, a special honour that recognizes the 91-year-old Prince's deep connection to Canada.

The award was presented Friday by Governor-General David Johnston during a special ceremony in Toronto.

Prince Philip is visiting Toronto for what is being described as a "private working visit." The Duke of Edinburgh had not been admitted to the Order of Canada before because he is not a Canadian citizen. However, Canada has created a new category of the order so that it can include members of the Royal Family.

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Prince Philip is the first to receive the honour under the recently created category of extraordinary companion.

"It provides for appointments of the Royal Family as a special recognition of the ties between the Royal Family and Canada," said Annabelle Cloutier, a spokesperson for the Governor-General.

Prince Philip is scheduled to attend Ontario's provincial legislature Saturday for a breakfast reception with Premier Kathleen Wynne and Lieutenant-Governor David Onley.

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