Dr. Moshe Kantor, President of the European Jewish Congress (EJC), was awarded the Ordre national de la Legion d’honneur (National Order of the Legion of Honour) by the President of France Francois Hollande.
The award is the highest decoration in France, established by Napoleon Bonaparte. For two centuries, it has been presented on behalf of the Head of State to reward the most deserving citizens in all fields of activity.
The award was bestowed on Dr. Kantor at the Elysee Palace by President Hollande for leading the fight against Antisemitism, racism, intolerance and xenophobia, working towards the rights of minorities, promoting interfaith relations and a more tolerant Europe in his roles at the European Jewish Congress, the democratically-elected umbrella organization representing European Jewry.
“Moshe Kantor is a great example of a community leader in the new Europe,” President Hollande said. “He combines the rare qualities of a deep devotion to his people and a commitment to tolerance and reconciliation between all peoples. Both European Jewry and wider European society owe him a debt of gratitude and that is why we honor him here today.”
“I am humbled by this honor,” Dr. Kantor said after receiving the award and spoke about the importance of it.
“I see this award as a testament to the French Government’s commitment to French and European Jewry,” Dr. Kantor said. “It has been a very challenging year for Jews in France, but I know that the French Government is making great efforts to protect our communities and return them to a semblance of normalcy.”
“I hope that the French Government will support and even lead the appointment of a European Union special envoy as well as the creation of a task force on Antisemitism at the European level as done so well in France.”