US Secretary of State, John Kerry accepts France’s highest honour in the presence of His Highness the Aga Khan and thanks the Aga Khan for his peace efforts around the world

“Your Highness, thank you so much.


My friend, the Aga Khan, I am deeply appreciative for our friendship and for your efforts for peace around the world.”


– John Kerry, US Secretary of State





Saturday, December 10, 2016,  at the Quai d’Orsay, the French Foreign Ministry in Paris, France.

Three days before His Highness’s 80th birthday, US Secretary of State, John Kerry was awarded France’s highest honour – Légion d’honneur (Legion of Honor) in the presence of various government officials and His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault bestowed the ‘Grand Officier de la Légion d’honneur‘ on Kerry on Saturday after the two held talks on Syria’s war.

In accepting the honor, Secretary of State Kerry was deeply appreciative of the relationships between France and the US and in his introductory remarks gave tribute to His Highness for his efforts for peace around the world.



French Foreign Minister Ayrault paid tribute to the “sincerity” of Kerry’s political and diplomatic engagement, citing his contributions as secretary of state to the historic 2015 climate change agreement, the Iran nuclear deal and the struggle to bring the war in Syria to an end.


Secretary Kerry Delivers his Thanks After French Foreign Minister Ayrault Awarded him the Grand Office of the Légion d'Honneur


A Group of Dignitaries Listen as French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault Prepares to Award Secretary Kerry the Grand Officer of the Légion d'honneur


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Investiture of the Légion d’honneur on the Aga Khan Family

  • His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan, Commander of the Légion d’honneur (1990)
  • Prince Aly Khan (His Highness’ father), Officer in the  Légion d’honneur (1950)
  • Prince Sadruddin(His Highness’ uncle), Commandeur of the Légion d’honneur (1979)


About the Légion d’honneur

The Légion d’honneur (Legion of Honour) or Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur (National Order of the Legion of Honour), is the highest French order for military and civil merits, established in 1802 by Napoléon Bonaparte. This world-renowned Order is the highest decoration in France and is divided into five degrees of increasing distinction: Chevalier (Knight), Officier (Officer), Commandeur (Commander), Grand Officier (Grand Officer) and Grand-Croix (Grand Cross).

For two centuries, it has been presented on behalf of the Head of State to reward the most deserving citizens in all fields of activity.

The order’s motto is Honneur et Patrie (Honour and Fatherland) and its seat is the Palais de la Légion d’honneur next to the Musée d’Orsay, on the left bank of the River Seine in Paris.

The Legion of Honour has 93,000 members. Every year some 3,000 people are inducted, one-third in a military capacity, two-thirds as civilians.

Some 400 foreigners are awarded this honour every year but, unlike French nationals, they are not members of the Legion of Honour.



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Research, Insight & Perspective by A. Maherali











One thought

  1. Very nice. SoS Kerry’s remarks about HH Aga Khan’s roles in furthering peace around the world were clearly another nod at the Noble Committee.
    You say there are many categories of the Legion. Which one did Sos get and which one does the Aga Khan have?
    >>highest honour – Legion d’Honneur (Legion of Honor)<<


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