President Shimon Peres attended a ceremony marking Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee at the UK ambassador’s residence in Tel Aviv Tuesday.

Peres expressed his admiration for the British monarch, saying she earned the love and respect of millions of people around the world because of her willingness to serve the nation instead of rule over it.

“As former British subjects and current Israel citizens, we owe deep gratitude to Britain and the royal dynasty,” said Peres.

UK Ambassador to Israel Matthew Gould told Peres, “There are very few people who can compare to the Queen and her 60 years, but you are undoubtedly one of them. The Queen unites all parts of Britain and its people, and like her, you are the one who unites all the parts of Israel.”

Gould also spoke about the threat of a nuclear Iran and said that the two countries would continue cooperating to prevent it from gaining nuclear weapons.

In 2008, Queen Elizabeth awarded Peres an honorary knighthood in an official ceremony at Buckingham Palace.