The Strategist

Colombian president won the Nobel Peace Prize

10/07/2016 - 15:30

Nobel Peace Prize for 2016 went to President of Colombia Juan Manuel Santos. The Nobel Committee rewarded his efforts to end of war between the country's government and the FARC guerrillas.

Center for American Progress
Center for American Progress
President of Colombia Juan Manuel Santos won the Nobel Peace Prize for 2016. On Friday, 7 October, the Committee declared the Nobel Peace prize taker in Oslo.

The prize was awarded for resolution of a conflict between the country’s authorities and the FARC guerrillas. Thus, the Norwegian Nobel Committee paid their tribute to Santos’s efforts to finish civil war which lasted more than 50 years, claimed lives of at least 220 thousand Colombians, and forced 6 million people to leave the country.

"This award should also symbolize merits of the people of Colombia, who, in spite of hardship and suffering, did not leave hope for a just peace," - said the committee in a press release.

The Armistice Agreement between the government of Colombia and the leftist rebel group Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) was signed in Cartagena, September 26, 2016. After that, the authorities arranged a referendum. Most of its participants (50.22 per cent) did not support Bogota’s agreement with the FARC. 49.77 per cent were in favor of a peace agreement. Colombia's President commented results of the plebiscite, saying that he accepted the negative outcome. However, Juan Manuel Santos said that the ceasefire with FARC fighters will still be in force.

Santos became the second Colombian, who won the Nobel Prize. The first was writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez, won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982. Peace Prize 2016 will be awarded on December 10 in Oslo. Other Nobel laureates will be awarded on the same day in Stockholm. 

Among the 376 nominees for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016 were diplomats from negotiations on the nuclear deal with Iran (namely, head of the US Department of State John Kerry and his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif), a Russian defender of the rights of migrants, as well as former Yazidi slaves of terrorist organization Islamic State.

The problem of migrants has drawn great attention. One of the nominees was Russian Svetlana Gannushkina as for many years she has worked with refugees and migrants even before the European migration crisis started. Besides, the list included Greek people from islands in the Aegean Sea, who saved African and Middle Eastern refugees, and Syrian volunteers, the "White Helmets", for their efforts to rescue civilians during bombing in Syria.

The Peace Prize has been awarded for the 97th time. First Prize winners were announced in 1901. In 2015, the Peace Prize went to Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet.

Peace Prize, often called the most prestigious of all Nobel Prizes, is awarded to "a person that achieved greatest success, or did more than others for solidarity of people and for reduction of existing armies, as well as for holding peaceful congresses and attracting attention to them."


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