Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel sees the fact that Germany and Israel have developed such close bilateral relations despite the crimes of the Holocaust as almost a miracle. These close relations also serve as an example for the present day “that bitter enemies cannot only become partners, but even friends”. Countless bilateral projects play a part in the unique and wide-ranging relations between the two countries. Gabriel awarded the Shimon Peres Prize to two such projects on Tuesday evening (10 October).
Young, dedicated and cooperative
The Shimon Peres Prize, which was awarded for the first time this year, went to two outstanding organisations. The first was the Migration Hub Network Berlin-Tel Aviv, which organises exchanges of experts with the aim of creating economic and social integration opportunities for refugees and socially disadvantaged people.
Störung, the second prizewinner, brings together academics, artists and people with Parkinson’s disease from Germany and Israel.
Working on completely different areas, the two projects address current issues in society. Their achievements go far beyond the projects themselves and are relevant to the society of the future. The fact that the Shimon Peres Prize was awarded to two German-Israeli projects rather than to individuals highlights once again the wide range of joint German-Israeli projects and in particular the large number of projects run by young people.
In memory of a Nobel Peace Prize laureate
The Federal Foreign Office and the German-Israeli Future Forum Foundation awarded the Shimon Peres Prize for the first time, shortly after the first anniversary of Peres’ death. During his term as Foreign Minister, Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier launched an initiative to establish a Shimon Peres Prize, with the aim of paying tribute to Shimon Peres’ lasting importance for German-Israeli relations and regional and global peace initiatives. It was a matter of personal importance to Foreign Minister Gabriel to continue this initiative.
The prize pays tribute to young professionals from Germany and Israel who work together to foster the future of the bilateral relations.