Cross of the Order of Merit for Rüdiger Nehberg
Rüdiger Nehberg was awarded the Cross of the Order of
Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany by President Johannes
Rau on 28th February 2002. The ceremony was performed by the
Minister President of Schleswig-Holstein, Heide Simonis, in
the state government residence in Kiel.
The award honoured Nehberg's many years of work for the survival
of the Yanomami Indians of Brazil, campaigns for nature conservation
and the current commitment against Female Genital Mutilation.
Simonis recognized Nehberg's dialogue with Islam as particularly
noteworthy. She described it as a successful starting point
to counter effectively the barbaric practise of Female Genital
Mutilation: "Long-term change can only be achieved with
respect for the values and traditions of those affected."
Ms. Heide Simonis' speech for award ceremony can be accessed
above under "Speech".