NOBEL PRIZE FOR PEACE
12, Oct 2019
Prelims level : International Institutions Mains level : GS-II- Important International Institutions, Agencies and fora- their Structure, Mandate.
Why in News?
- Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali was chosen as the awardee for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize for “his important work to promote reconciliation, solidarity and social justice”.
- The Norwegian Nobel Committee said: “Abiy Ahmed Ali has initiated important reforms that give many citizens hope for a better life and a brighter future.”
Achievements of Abiy Ahmed Ali
- When Abiy became Prime Minister in 2018, Ethiopia had been locked in conflict with Eritrea for 20 years. In July that year, the former Army officer-turned-PM, stepped across the border, held Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki in a warm embrace and signalled the beginning of a peace effort, announcing to the world that war was no longer an option.
- It also listed domestic achievements by Abiy in his first 100 days as Prime Minister — lifting Emergency, granting amnesty to thousands of political prisoners, discontinuing media censorship, legalising outlawed opposition groups, dismissing military and civilian leaders suspected of corruption, and increasing the influence of women in political and community life.
Roots of the Conflict:
- Eritrea, once an Italian colony, was merged with Ethiopia in 1936 during Benito Mussolini’s regime, then taken over by the British during the Second World War. After the War, a United Nations declaration in 1950 made Eritrea part of a federation with Ethiopia.
- When Eritrean groups launched a struggle for independence in 1961, Ethiopia dissolved the federation and annexed Eritrea in 1962. After a war that lasted 30 years, Eritrea gained international recognition as an independent country in 1993.
- Just five years later, however, war broke out over the control of Badme, a border town both countries coveted.
- The violence, which went on until an agreement to cease hostilities in 2000, claimed 80,000 lives and separated countless families. Since then, the two countries were in a state the Nobel Committee described as “no peace, no war”.
Nobel peace prize 2019: Key Facts:
- The awardee for Nobel Peace Prize is chosen by a five-member Committee elected by the Norwegian Parliament (Storting)
- Abiy Ahmed Ali is the first Nigerian to ever receive a Nobel Prize.
- The 2019 Nobel Peace Prize was the 100th Nobel Peace Prize to be awarded.
- The 2018 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded jointly to Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad to recognize their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war.