Friday, 12 Aug 2022 - 15 of Av, 5782

Czech President Miloš Zeman awarded Israel’s Presidential Medal of Honor

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The award was granted in honor of Czech President Miloš Zeman’s “deep friendship with the Jewish People, and consistent support for Israel on the international stage.”

In receiving the award, the Czech President declared: “Needless to say, the Czech Republic fully supports the Israeli people against the international community,” says Zeman. “In this context, we also discussed with Mr. President the anti-Israeli decision of the UN Human Rights Council, a decision that we both strongly condemned.”

Israeli President Isaac Herzog has awarded Czech President Miloš Zeman Israel’s Presidential Medal of Honor, a statement from Herzog’s office said.

The award, the first presented by Herzog as president, was granted during his one-day visit to the Czech Republic on Monday.

The visit kicked off with an official welcoming ceremony and honor guard at Prague Castle in the Czech capital, after which Herzog held a private meeting with Zeman and an expanded meeting with the participation of both countries’ delegations, according to the statement.

The Israeli Presidential Medal of Honor advisory committee noted the Czech president’s “deep friendship with the Jewish People, his consistent support for Israel on the international stage, and his zero tolerance policy toward terrorism and anti-Semitism, said Herzog’s office.

Israel and the Czech Republic enjoy close and friendly diplomatic ties based on “over a century-long friendship and historical affinity that has found expression in moments of crisis and difficulty,” the statement added. It described Zeman as “an unwavering supporter of Israel.”

In his remarks at the presentation ceremony, Herzog stated, “The Czech-Jewish writer Franz Kafka wrote in his diary in February 1922: ‘Possibilities exist in me, possibilities close at hand that I don’t yet know of.’ President Zeman, for many years you have proven beyond all doubt that the possibilities and opportunities within you are well-known and famed as a beacon and an example for all of us, for the Czech Republic, for Israel, and for the whole of humanity.

“You are an important ally, and your love of Israel has given it renown in the family of nations. It is no secret that for several decades, Israel and [the Czech Republic]have been true partners, learning from each other, supporting each other, and relying on each other.”

Herzog added, “We remember well, and shall always remember, the Czech support for the establishment of the State of Israel. We also remember Czechia’s greatest leaders, and for many years, it has been thanks to this amity and partnership that we have advanced our nations’ shared ideological, economic and security interests. We thank you for your support for the State of Israel in international forums. We thank you for your clear moral stance, taking Israel’s side against the many enemies who wish to destabilize the Middle East.”

In receiving the award, the Czech President declared: “Needless to say, the Czech Republic fully supports the Israeli people against the international community,” says Zeman. “In this context, we also discussed with Mr. President the anti-Israeli decision of the UN Human Rights Council, a decision that we both strongly condemned.”

The Israeli president visited the Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague and the city’s oldest synagogue, where he met with members of the local Jewish community.

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