Paris – French President Emmanuel Macron has made British pop star Elton John a knight of the Legion of Honour.
The designation honours John’s artistic career and campaigning in the field of HIV and AIDS, Macron said on Friday evening in the Elysee Palace.
The 41-year-old awarded the prestigious award at the annual music festival "Fete de la musique," which is held throughout the country. Elton John was touched and honoured.
"I have a huge love affair with France. I have a house here," the 72-year-old star said.
It is not the first high-ranking award for the singer of "Rocketman" and "Candle In The Wind:" In 1998, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II knighted him, since when he carries the title "Sir."
The Briton is on a world tour, currently giving concerts in France.
Macron took the meeting with the pop legend as an opportunity to appeal for the fight against dangerous diseases such as AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
Because of these diseases, there are still 2.7 million deaths worldwide, according to French data.
In October, the donors of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria are scheduled to meet in Lyon.
They are aiming to raise at least 13 billion dollars for the next three years, the presidential office said.
"We have to find financing," Macron said.