The National Medal of Recognition for victims of terrorism was created in the wake of the terrorist attacks of 2015 against France and the values she stands for. It honors those who are killed, wounded or held captive in terrorist events.
The National Medal of Recognition is designed to pay tribute to victims of terrorism and to contribute to their resilience. It is therefore a special type of award, since it is not intended as a reward for services rendered to the nation.
It was created by presidential decree on July 12, 2016, on a proposal from the Grand Chancellor of the Legion of Honor.
The idea of its creation came about following the attacks in November 2015, in Paris and Saint-Denis, resulting in 130 deaths, and in January 2015 targeting freedom of expression, a fundamental value of the French Republic.
These events gave rise to great emotion nationwide and made evident a need to honor the victims of terrorism, pointing out a previous gap in the French award system.
- French citizens who have been killed, wounded or held hostage during terrorist acts perpetrated in France or abroad;
- Foreign citizens who have been killed, wounded or held hostage during terrorist acts perpetrated in France or abroad against the interests of the French Republic.
Individuals must be officially recongnised as victim of terrorism by the parquet de Paris, or by the fonds de garantie aux victimes, or appear on the list of victims of terrorism held by the French Ministry of Justice.
The National Medal of Recognition for victims of terrorism is awarded retroactively as of January 1st, 2006.
Award process and management
The National Medal of Recognition for victims of terrorism is conferred by presidential decree.
It is requested by the victim or his family.
The Prime Minister sends the Grand Chancellor of the Legion of Honor the nomination dossiers assembled by the Ministry of Justice. The dossiers are then submitted to the Council of the Order of the Legion of Honor.
Since it was created and is awarded by presidential decree, the National Medal of Recognition for victims of terrorism is ranked 5th in the order of precedence, before ministerial decorations.
The Medal is managed by the Grand Chancellery of the Legion of Honor, as are the National Orders and the Military Medal.
The Medal is awarded either in a collective cohort or by an individual decree.
Asking the Medal
The National Medal of Recognition for victims of terrorism is a white flower with five petals separated by olive leaves, attached to a white ribbon.
On the obverse, it bears the statue of the Republic on the Place de la République in Paris, with the inscription « République française » (French Republic); on the reverse, it depicts two crossed French flags and the national motto « Liberté-Egalité-Fraternité » (Liberty-Equality-Fraternity).