Zatlers to meet Grand Master of Order of Malta
(Riga, 28.10.2008) Today in Riga Castle, President Valdis Zatlers
will hold a meeting with His Most Eminent Highness Fra’ Matthew Festing, Prince and Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem, of Rhodes and of Malta.
After the meeting Zatlers and Festing will hold a joint press briefing, as the President’s Press Office informed LETA.
At 11 a.m. the Grand Master of Order of Malta, together with President, will lay a wreath of flowers by the Freedom Monument, at 7 p.m. Fra’ Matthew Festing will participate in a state dinner, organized in his honor by the president.
The president’s Chapter of Orders have decided to grant 10 Latvia’s state highest State Awards to members of the Order of Malta. The Grand Master Fra’ Matthew Festing will receive the First Class Order of the Three Stars.
The president’s public relation advisor, Maija Celmina, confirmed to LETA that the Order of the Three Stars will be bestowed during the framework of the Grand Master Fra’ Matthew Festing’s visit to Latvia, which will last until October 31.
Today, Cabinet of Ministers will review draft project on signing a memorandum of understanding between the governments of Latvia and the Order of Malta. On the side from Latvian government the memorandum of understanding will be signed by the Ambassador of Latvia to the Order of Malta Alberts Sarkanis.
The Latvian Foreign Ministry points out that signing the memorandum will enhance the development of cooperation between Latvia and Malta by diversifying cooperation in the social, humanitarian and health care sectors, as well as setting the framework and guidelines for further relations in the future.
Tags: Festing, Knights of Malta
Shimon Peres to be knighted by Queen Elizabeth Friday, October 24, 2008
Israeli media reported this week that the Israeli Embassy in London and Buckingham Palace are close to an agreement on having Queen Elizabeth confer honorary knighthood on Israeli President Shimon Peres when he visits the UK next month.
The appointment would make Peres a Knight Commander in the Order of St. Michael and St. George, a title usually reserved for British colonial affairs officials, foreign-service officers and high-ranking diplomats in Commonwealth countries.
However, the Queen has on numerous occasions appointed foreigners to the Order. Among some of the more famous are Bill Gates and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.
The honorary nature of the appointment means Peres would not be entitled to prefix "Sir" before his name.
Israeli Foreign Ministry sources cited by The Jerusalem Post warned that the Israeli media's focus on the story could prevent Peres from being knighted during his upcoming visit, as opponents of the move will now try to scuttle it.