The official announcement of Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb as recipient of the 2011 prestigious international award “Deutscher Medienpreis” was made in Germany today Friday, January 13, 2012. Launched in 1992, the award was mainly granted to Heads of States, including the German Chancellor Angela Merkel (2009), the Dali Lama (2008), King Juan Carlos of Spain (2006), Kofi Anan (2003), Queen Rania of Jordan (2002), , Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder (2000), Bill Clinton (1999), Nelson Mandela (1998), King Hussein of Jordan (1997), Boris Yeltsin (1996), President Arafat (1995), Yitshak Rabin (1995), Francois Mitterrand (1994), Chancellor Helmut Cole (1993), in addition to few and selected personalities such as Sir Richard Branson (2010), Steffi Graf (2007), Bono (2005) and Rudolph Giuliani (2002).
Aside from Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb, the award is given to the Russian Stanislaw Petrow, who prevented a potential third world nuclear war in 1983; the Afghani Dr. Sakena Yacoobi who worked diligently on empowering women in Afghanistan; and to Dr. Denis Mukwege from Congo, who assisted thousands of rape victims in the Congo war.
The decision of the jury to give the award to Rev. Dr. Raheb was based on his tireless work in creating room for hope for his people, who are living under Israeli Occupation, through founding and building institutions of excellence in education, culture and health. He was also recognized due to his strong position and stance on the Culture of Life and Dialogue. [Rev. Dr. Raheb is the president of Global Ministries' partner, the Diyar Consortium.]
The official ceremony will be held in the city of Baden in Germany on February 14, 2012. The keynote speaker during the celebration will be the previous German Chancellor Professor Roman Herzog.
Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb expressed his delight to receive this prestigious award, since it is indicative of the international appreciation and recognition of his efforts that are made on the local, regional and international levels.
Update (Feb. 24): Leaders of several North American churches, including the Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins (Disciples) and Rev. Geoffrey Black (UCC), have sent a letter of support to "Deutscher Medienpreis" for conferring this award upon Rev. Raheb. Click here for the letter in English, and here for the German version.
Update (Feb. 24): Lutheran World Federation congratulates Mitri Raheb for German Media Prize.
Update (Feb. 27): Click here to read Rev. Raheb's acceptance speech.