On 11 September, Her Majesty Queen Rania of Jordan received the Andrea Bocelli Humanitarian Award in Italy. This was done to recognize the hard work she has done for children’s rights, refugees, and community empowerment.
She was presented with the award at the 2016 Celebrity Fight Night in Italy benefitting the Andrea Bocelli Foundation and the Muhammed Ali Parkinson Center by Andrea Bocelli and Veronica Bocelli. The event was held at the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy. Celebrity Fight Night has been held for the past three years to raise money for different charities and highlight those public figures who have worked hard in humanitarian work.
On Twitter, Her Majesty said, “Honoured to receive the Andrea Bocelli Humanitarian Award from a foundation that has done a lot to help those in need around the world.”
During her acceptance speech, Rania praised Florence for being the cradle of the Renaissance and called for a new Renaissance that would, “Drive humanity to give its best just when the stakes are highest.” She further said that a new Renaissance would help to re-energize the necessity of human decency and compassion.
Rania also touched on the violent attacks perpetrated by Islamic extremists around the world. She expressed how a new Renaissance would assist in stopping the forces of evil that aim to “wreak havoc on us.” Specifically, Queen Rania said, “They want us to live in a world of black and white, where the only color is the red of bloodshed.” Her Majesty has been a vocal opponent of the spread of radical Islam, which she said earlier this year on Fox News operates under a “false banner of Islam.”
Her Majesty mentioned the destruction of art, history, and civilization in places like Palmyra, Syria, and Nimrud, Iraq, by the group Daesh. She also mentioned the heartbreaking image of the young boy in Aleppo, Syria, as an example of the suffering the refugees have gone through. She used this opportunity to express the need to support the refugees and the forces fighting against extremism.
She closed her acceptance speech that evening by asking the audience if they want the legacy of this civilization to be one of the destruction of “civilizations and ruined childhoods” from war. She then requested that the world work together, no matter the culture and different backgrounds, to make the world a better place and to “redefine a legacy that the world will still celebrate half a millennium from now.”