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Queen's knighthood for Bono

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LONDON, England (CNN) -- Bono -- the Irish rock star, anti-poverty campaigner, and philanthropist -- has been awarded an honorary British knighthood, the British Embassy in Dublin said on Saturday.

"The British Embassy in Dublin takes great pleasure in announcing that Her Majesty The Queen has appointed Bono to be an honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in recognition of his services to the music industry and for his humanitarian work," according to an embassy news release.

The British ambassador to Ireland, David Reddaway, is to give Bono -- a member of the rock group U2 -- an "insignia of this honorary award" after New Year's in a ceremony in the Irish capital.

The embassy pointed out that titles such as "Sir" or "Dame" do not come with such honorary awards, "conferred on citizens of countries of which The Queen is not Head of State."

Bono is an Irish citizen. Bob Geldof, the Irish rock star who organized the Live Aid concerts, got the same award in 1986.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair said the award is well-deserved for Bono's "remarkable" humanitarian work and for his "outstanding contribution" to music with U2.

"I'll leave it to others far more knowledgeable than me to talk about U2's music. All I'll say is that, along with millions of others right across the world, I am a huge fan.

"But I feel a little more qualified to talk about your personal commitment to tackling global poverty and, in particular, to Africa," Blair said in a letter to Bono posted on the prime minister's office Web site.

"I want personally to thank you for the invaluable role you played in the run up to the Gleneagles G8 Summit.

"Without your personal contribution, we could not have achieved the results we did. So thank you and I look forward to continuing to work together to maintain momentum on Africa, and ensure leaders around the world meet the promises they have made."


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Bono: Praised by Tony Blair

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