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Presenting Russian Federation state decorations

October 29, 2013, The Kremlin, Moscow

A ceremony for presenting state decorations to outstanding Russians took place in the Kremlin's St Catherine Hall.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, dear friends,

Following tradition, today the ceremony awarding state decorations is taking place in the Kremlin. And as always in these cases, there is a sense of pride here in the great achievements represented in this hall: pride in your talent, your work, your successes, and the outstanding outcomes of your work. In the run-up to National Unity Day, we are particularly aware of the importance and significance of these achievements. And especially of their role in consolidating our multi-ethnic nation around the values ​​of patriotism, allegiance to the Motherland, and responsibility for its fate.

Here today there are figures from science, culture, art and fashion; there are workers from industrial sectors, healthcare and education; and there are diplomats, law enforcement officers, and entrepreneurs who have high standards for efficiency and social responsibility.

I sincerely want to thank you all for your work and contribution to our country’s development. And I would like to say a special word to the older generation. For us, naturally you are an example of professional duty, honesty, and uncompromising, dedication to your vocation. Whatever Russia’s fate, whatever historic changes it experienced, you always faithfully served the Fatherland. The creative biographies of Yury Lyubimov and Vladimir Etush, as well as their service in World War II, bear witness to this. We admire your energy, optimism, efficiency and talent. Famous directors and actors such as Tatyana Doronina, Mark Zakharov, Inna Churikova, Alexander Zbruyev, Margarita Terekhova and Dmitry Pevtsov carefully preserve the traditions of Russia’s theatrical school. Each of you has his or her own artistic credo, style and way of opening new horizons in the theatrical arts. But you are all loved and respected by your audiences, which is the best evidence of your talent and creative work.

The title National Artist of Russia is being conferred today on Chulpan Khamatova. We all know you not only as a wonderful actress, but as a person who, for many, many years now, has responded to the call of your heart and helped gravely ill children. Faina Zakharova, head of the Lifeline charitable foundation, commits similar selfless deeds. She is being awarded the decoration For Good Deeds.

”Each of you has not only made ​​a significant contribution to Russia’s development, but your lives indicate respect for values ​​such as professional and civic duty, respect for the traditions of our ancestors, and the desire for honest and constructive work.“

Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to Syria Azamat Kulmukhametov is being awarded the Order of Courage. In difficult conditions, Mr Kulmukhametov and his colleagues demonstrated unwavering firmness and integrity when protecting the interests of their Motherland.

For military valour, courage and utmost professionalism while performing critical tasks, the Order for Services to the Fatherland, IV degree is awarded to the commander of Rys special rapid reaction unit, Colonel Vladimir Yershov. A military officer, he served for more than 25 years, and since 1993 has passed through virtually all so-called hot spots, and participated in the liberation of the hostages from Dubrovka Theatre. Such people are the honour and pride of our law enforcement agencies.

Dear friends,

Each of you has not only made ​​a significant contribution to Russia’s development, but your lives indicate respect for values ​​such as professional and civic duty, respect for the traditions of our ancestors, and the desire for honest and constructive work. You directly influence the creation of an atmosphere of mutual understanding and civic responsibility in our society.

A great deal of work to strengthen the harmony and development of interfaith dialogue is being carried out by leaders of Russia’s traditional religious organisations, [Supreme Mufti of Russia] Talgat Tadzhuddin and [Chief Rabbi of Russia] Adolf Shayevich. What you are doing is very important for our multinational country, for the unity of the large, multi-ethnic Russian people, and for strengthening our country’s spiritual power and greatness.

Today I am glad to welcome our great, longstanding friend, sports expert from Italy and head coach of the Russian national judo team, Mr Ezio Gamba. He has done a lot for the sport’s development. At the London Olympic Games, our judo team achieved completely unprecedented results in the history of the Olympic movement.

I sincerely congratulate all those receiving state decorations today. They reflect the extent to which our society and people appreciate you.

I wish you further significant, important, brilliant successes!

Thank you very much for your attention.

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October 29, 2013, The Kremlin, Moscow