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Herzog to award Biden Israeli Presidential Medal of Honor during next week’s visit

Lazar Berman is The Times of Israel's diplomatic reporter

Then-US Vice President Joe Biden (left) with then Opposition chairman Isaac Herzog. in 2015 (Isaac Herzog/Twitter)
Then-US Vice President Joe Biden (left) with then Opposition chairman Isaac Herzog. in 2015 (Isaac Herzog/Twitter)

President Isaac Herzog will award US President Joe Biden the Israeli Presidential Medal of Honor during his visit to Israel next week, Herzog’s office announces.

The medal, given to individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to Israel or humanity, will be granted in a ceremony at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem.

The president will be giving the decoration to recognize Biden’s “true friendship with the State of Israel, the people of Israel, and the Jewish People; his uncompromising decades-long commitment to Israel’s security; his contributions to deepening, strengthening, and enhancing the strong and unwavering alliance between Israel and the United States of America; and his struggle against anti-Israeli and antisemitic hatred around the world.”

The award, bestowed on 26 people thus far, was initiated by then-president Shimon Peres in 2012. The medal, based on the French Legion of Honor, was last given in 2014. Herzog’s predecessor, Reuven Rivlin, did not grant it at all. Herzog reconstituted the Medal of Honor advisory committee upon taking office, under retired Supreme Court Justice Yoram Danziger.

“Since the start of President Biden’s rich career in public service in the 1970s, he has established himself as a person who loves Israel and is a true friend of the whole Jewish People,” says the committee in its recommendation that Biden receive the medal.

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