Prague, Nov 16 (CTK) – Czech State Secretary for European Affairs Tomas Prouza received the supreme French state decoration, the National Order of the Legion of Honour, for his work in support of European integration at the French Embassy on Wednesday.

French Ambassador to Prague Charles Malinas presented Prouza with the insignia of the Legion of Honour Order’s knight.

In his speech, Malinas highlighted “Prouza’s tireless effort in favour of the European project” and hid contribution to Czech-French relations.

“You are making the European Union kind and comprehensible,” Malinas said.

He also praised Prouza’s knowledge of European politics.

“You ae the voice of common sense and pragmatism in Europe. It is also thanks to you that the Czech government’s policy is pro-European,” he added.

Prouza, 43, has been the state secretary for European affairs since 2014. He dealt with the EU issues in his previous posts as well. He was a deputy to finance minister Bohuslav Sobotka (current PM) in 2004-2007 and the national coordinator for the euro adoption in the Czech Republic.

The Order of the Legion of Honour, founded by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1802, is bestowed on the basis of the French president’s decree on French citizens as well as foreigners for their excellent culture, social and military contribution to the French nation or projects that France supports.

The list of Czechs decorated with this order in the past includes first Czechoslovak president Tomas Garrigue Masaryk (in office 1918-35), his successor Edvard Benes (1935-48) and first post-Communist Czechoslovak and Czech president Vaclav Havel (19889-2003), wartime pilots Frantisek Fajtl and Frantisek Perina, General Petr Pavel, Cardinal Miloslav Vlk, artist Frantisek Kupka, writers Milan Kundera and Pavel Tigrid, philosopher Jan Sokol, violinist Josef Suk, film director Milos Forman and singer Marta Kubisova.