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2007 Bestowal of the Cross of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany

On October 5th, 2007, Minister for Education Helmut Rau, Member of Parliament, awarded the Cross of Merit on ribbon to Mr. Ibrahim Samak. The German Federal President Horst Koehler had bestowed Mr. Samak with this high merit upon the recommendation of Baden-Wuerttemberg's premier, Guenther H. Oettinger, on September 11, 2007.

The ceremony took place in the New Castle in Stuttgart in the presence of the Egyptian Ambassador in Germany, Mohamed Al-Orabi. Further guests were: ECA president Bernhard Juchniewicz, Bishop Damian, several representants of the coptic-orthodox patriarchate as well as other dignitaries. Numerous guests of honour had travelled to join the ceremony.

In his speech, the minister not only honoured Mr. Samak's professional success in solar technology, but also his extraordinary merits for the integration of foreigners in Germany as well as his honory engagement for supporting the underpriviliged in Africa and for promoting young talents. Another aspect was the strong engagement for the youth, especially through the ecumenical youth meetings, the European Youth Mission, which had been started by Mr. Samak.

In the private celebration following the ceremony, which was joined by his family, friends and other respected guests, Mr. Samak thanked all those who supported and accompanied him on his way, with a citation from Antoine de Saint-Exupery.