Germany honors US Joint Chiefs of Staff Mullen

June 9, 2011 - 12:44 PM
Germany US Mullen

German Defense Minister Thomas de Maiziere, left, hands over the Grand Cross of Merit with Star of the Federal Republic of Germany to Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, right, in Berlin, Germany, Thursday, June 9, 2011. (AP Photo/Gero Breloer)

BERLIN (AP) — Germany has presented the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen with one of its highest medals of honor.

The Defense Ministry says President Christian Wulff has awarded the Grand Cross of Merit with Star to Mullen for "his personal contribution for German soldiers on missions" and for his efforts to strengthen the German-American friendship.

German Defense Minister Thomas de Maiziere presented the medal to Mullen in Berlin on Thursday.

Mullen is to retire as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff when his term ends Sept. 30, and Gen. Martin Dempsey, a respected veteran commander in the Iraq war, will take that job as the U.S. president's top military adviser.