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Tuesday, September 24, 2002

Ambrogino d'Oro Award-Milan

Queen Rania receives the prestigious Ambrogino d'Oro Award of Milan for her contribution to humanitarian and social causes

(Office of Her Majesty, Press Department - Milan) In appreciation of her role in promoting dialogue between people and portraying an accurate image of Islam in the West, Queen Rania received the Ambrogino d'Oro Award, the most prestigious prize awarded by the city of Milan to prominent figures for their contribution to humanitarian and social causes.

On behalf of the city of Milan, Mr. Gabriele Albertini, Mayor of Milan presented the award to Queen Rania "... in recognition of the vital work she has done over recent years aimed at fostering dialogue between peoples and cultures and, in particular, for openness, hope and reciprocal knowledge among different societies."

The award honors Queen Rania's work in the field of women's rights and the hope that she brings for a new stage of dialogue between the west and the Arab world.

In his welcoming remarks, Mr. Anotonio Ferrari, a leading journalist in Italy and presenter of the event, said, "... in this hard battle, you have become a symbol in the Arab world and in the Mediterranean. You have been able, with enthusiasm and determination to influence and involve many women who are close to the heart of power, or who have an important social role in their countries."

Mr. Ferrari added that Queen Rania has directly faced social challenges and addressed the conditions of women and children thus promoting the respect of human rights. The award was presented at the Milan City Hall in the presence of top Italian government officials.

Mayor Albertini complemented Queen Rania's endless efforts that give hope for "... a new Jordan, more open within and without its boundaries; for a peaceful and safe Middle East; for a new Mediterranean open towards Europe and the rest of the world, building a common environment based not only on economic foundations but also on a shared cultural heritage; for an increasingly important role of women in society and the home, a prerequisite of real progress."

Queen Rania has emerged as a strong advocate of cross-cultural dialogue aimed at dispelling misconceptions of Islam and at a better understanding between different civilizations.

"All this has never been more important than today.We live at a critical time, a true turning point, when ignorance and division really can destroy our world. The real work of peace demands real interaction- people who bring true concern and mutual respect to the conversation- people who make an effort to bridge the world's divides," Queen Rania said.

In his speech, Mr. Cingoli, president of the Italian Center for Peace, stressed the important role that "... the young and new royal family is (taking) by walking the path of HM King of Jordan and following in his footsteps and teachings. The royal family has been able to walk so far with heart and mind towards the "new" and in so doing has won the growing admiration and respect of the world and the love of the Jordanian people."

In a speech delivered to about 200 people participating in a roundtable event on the role of women in the Mediterranean area following the receipt of the award, Queen Rania, the first member of a royal family to receive such a prize, stressed the importance of the award which is "... a bridge- a bridge of friendship between the peoples of Milan and Jordan; a bridge of partnership as we work together for global development and understanding; and a bridge of hope, hope for a better future for all our peoples."

The "Ambrogino d'Oro" is a gold medal portraying the picture of Saint Ambrogio, Milan's patron saint and is exceptionally awarded to people who do not live in Milan as a symbol of the city's gratitude for their activities in several areas.