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Juan Manuel Santos wins the Nobel Peace Prize 2016

Colombian President Manuel Santos wins the Nobel Peace Prize 2016 for his resolute efforts to bring the country’s civil war to an end.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos won the Nobel Peace Prize 2016 “for his resolute efforts to bring the country’s more than 50-year-long civil war to an end”. The committee highlighted that “cost the lives of at least 220,000 Colombians and displaced close to six million people. The award should also be seen as a tribute to the Colombian people who, despite great hardships and abuses, have not given up hope of a just peace, and to all the parties who have contributed to the peace process. This tribute is paid, not least, to the representatives of the countless victims of the civil war”. The prize should also be considered as “a tribute to Colombian citizens despite great hardships and abuses, have not given up hope of a just peace, and to all the parties who have contributed to the peace process”.

nobel peace prize 2016 juan manuel santos
Juan Manuel Santos won the Nobel Peace Prize 2016

The post-referendum disappointment

To ratify the peace agreement, a referendum has been organised that took place on Sunday 2 October and asked Colombian people: “Do you support the final agreement to end the conflict and build a stable and lasting peace?”. The no vote won against expectations, and deceived the entire international community. In spite of this, President Santos claimed that he will continue the negotiations with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) to find an agreement move towards the long-awaited peace. The ceasefire is bilateral and definitive “I will not give up: I will continue seeking peace until the last day of my presidency”, the Colombian President said the day after the referendum. This desire for peace was also confirmed by FARC leader Rodrigo Londoño: “The Farc reiterates its disposition to use only words as a weapon to build toward the future”.

Who is Juan Manuel Santos

Santos, 65, was born in the capital of Colombia, Bogotà, and is president since August 2010. Before becoming president he held ministerial offices. He’s a centre-right politician, he co-founded the Social Party of National Unity in 2005 with Álvaro Uribe, one of Colombia’s most prominent politicians of the last two decades. Santos was also a journalist and received a recognition for his chronicles of the sandinista revolution in Nicaragua.

What is the Nobel Peace Prize

The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded annually, since 1901, along with the other 4 Nobel Prizes: Physics, Chemistry, Medicine and Literature. The sixth, the Economy prize, has been introduced in 1969 for want of the Bank of Sweden. Unlike the others, the Nobel Peace Prize is not awarded in Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, but in Oslo, Norway’s capital.

The decision is taken by the Norwegian Nobel Committee, a 5-member committee chosen by the parliament of Oslo, as expressed Alfred Nobel in the will he wrote on 27 November 1895: the Nobel Peace Prize goes “to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses,” chosen “by a committee of five persons to be elected by the Norwegian Storting”, Oslo’s parliament. Alfred Nobel’s will was driven by the chemist’s fear of being remembered just for having invented dynamite. Kaci Kullmann Five attends the Nobel Peace Prize Award ceremony and the others committee members are Berit-Reiss Andersen (vice President), Inger-Marie Ytterhorn, Thorbjørn Jagland, Henrik Syse, Olav Njølstad.

Statistics on the Nobel Peace Prize

The average age of the award winning is 61 years old, whilst the youngest ever was Malala Yousafzai who was 17 when she won the prize in 2014. The Nobel Peace Prize hasn’t been awarded 19 times because, as written in the will, if no country stands out, the prize is kept for the following year. If the following year it is not awarded again, the sum goes to the Foundation. A common situation during the First and Second World Wars.

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