President Shimon Peres awarded German Chancellor Angela Merkel with the Presidential Medal of Distinction on Tuesday.
The medal is Israel’s highest civilian distinction. Merkel was being honored for her “commitment to Israel’s security” and education against anti-Semitism.
“You are not afraid to speak out against all anti-Semitic provocation,” Peres told Merkel as he presented her with the award.
“I came to tell you of the appreciation of my country for you,” he stated.
Peres said that Merkel had advanced the peace process and helped Israel to ensure its security.
“You’ve never hesitated to give us the necessary tools to defend ourselves,” Peres said. “You have stood up against the prospect of a nuclear-armed Iran,” he added.
Peres addressed the current round of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, saying that they were at a “critical juncture.” He voiced optimism that a peace agreement was attainable.
Upon accepting the award, Merkel also called for peace between Israel and the Palestinians on the basis of a two-state solution.
View original Jerusalem Post publication at: http://www.jpost.com/Diplomacy-and-Politics/WATCH-LIVE-President-Peres-awards-Merkel-Medal-of-Distinction-343499