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Director General  José Graziano da Silva

FAO’s Director General is given Italian knighthood

The award is the highest honor the Italian state offers

FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva and Sergio Mattarella, President of the Italian Republic

12 April 2016, Rome – FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva is now an Italian knight, as Italy’s head of state, Sergio Mattarella, awarded him the country’s highest honor by making him a “Cavaliere di Gran Croce dell'Ordine al Merito della Repubblica”.

The prestigious title is given as “recognition for worthy acts for the nation in the fields of literature, art, economy and for excellence in public service or for activities done with social, philanthropic and humanitarian goals, as well as for long and dignified services in the civil and military branches.”

President Mattarella also named Mario Lubetkin, Directeur de Cabinet of the Director-General’s office, a “Commendatore”.

Maurizio Martina, Italy’s minister for agriculture, food and forest policies, was present at the award ceremony, along with Pierfrancesco Sacco, Italy’s permanent representative at the three UN agencies based in Rome.