President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi has this morning, Sunday 26 January, been awarded the Semper Opera Ball’s Dresden Medal of St George in recognition of his “untiring efforts to serve peace in Africa; and to bring security, stability, and development to Egypt,” said a statement by the union organising the Semper Opera Ball, the largest classical entertainment event in German-speaking Europe.
The statement praised the Egyptian President’s endeavors to build bridges for peace in crisis-hit North Africa, applauding him as “a statesman holding the torch of hope and encouragement for an entire continent”.
A German delegation headed by Hans-Joachim Frey, artistic director of Semper Opera Ball, handed President Sisi the medal for the year.
The President expressed his gratitude for the honour, and said that he welcomed cooperation with the Semper Opera Ball through Egypt’s cultural institutions. He said that the year 2020 should witness the opening of state-of-the-art opera houses in Egypt’s new capital and in new Alamein; also the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) and the Museum of Egyptian Civilisation.
The medal of St George awarded by the Semper Opera Ball was originally the Saxon medal of honour. It represents both an award and a symbol. It is awarded to those who have, like St George, been a force for good in the world, despite all opposition, those who “swim against the current”.
The badge of the medal is a replica of another medal dating back to the Baroque period. It depicts St George killing a dragon, symbolising the victory of good over evil. The original medal is displayed at the Green Vault Museum in Dresden.
The medal was previously awarded to a number of heads of States and senior officials: among them Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2009, Queen Sylvia of Sweden in 2014, and Rumanian President Klaus Iohannis in 2017.
26 January 2020