Nobel Peace Prize 2015

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The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2015 is to be awarded to the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet for its decisive contribution to the building of a pluralistic democracy in Tunisia in the wake of the Jasmine Revolution of 2011.

The Quartet was formed in the summer of 2013 when the democratization process was in danger of collapsing as a result of political assassinations and widespread social unrest. It established an alternative, peaceful political process at a time when the country was on the brink of civil war. It was thus instrumental in enabling Tunisia, in the space of a few years, to establish a constitutional system of government guaranteeing fundamental rights for the entire population, irrespective of gender, political conviction or religious belief.

The National Dialogue Quartet has comprised four key organizations in Tunisian civil society: the Tunisian General Labour Union, the Tunisian Confederation of Industry, Trade and Handicrafts, the Tunisian Human Rights League, and the Tunisian Order of Lawyers (Ordre National des Avocats de Tunisie). These organizations represent different sectors and values in Tunisian society: working life and welfare, principles of the rule of law and human rights.

On this basis, the Quartet exercised its role as a mediator and driving force to advance peaceful democratic development in Tunisia with great moral authority. The Nobel Peace Prize for 2015 is awarded to this Quartet, not to the four individual organizations as such.

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BACKGROUND:

The Arab Spring originated in Tunisia in 2010-2011, but quickly spread to a number of countries in North Africa and the Middle East. In many of these countries, the struggle for democracy and fundamental rights has come to a standstill or suffered setbacks. Tunisia, however, has seen a democratic transition based on a vibrant civil society with demands for respect for basic human rights.

An essential factor for the culmination of the revolution in Tunisia in peaceful, democratic elections last autumn was the effort made by the Quartet to support the work of the constituent assembly and to secure approval of the constitutional process among the Tunisian population at large. The Quartet paved the way for a peaceful dialogue between the citizens, the political parties and the authorities and helped to find consensus-based solutions to a wide range of challenges across political and religious divides. The broad-based national dialogue that the Quartet succeeded in establishing countered the spread of violence in Tunisia and its function is therefore comparable to that of the peace congresses to which Alfred Nobel refers in his will.

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PAST WINNERS OF NOBLE PEACE PRIZE

2015: Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet, Tunisia.

2014: Kailash Satyarthi, India, and Malala Yousafzai, Pakistan.

2013: Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

2012: European Union.

2011: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberia, Leymah Gbowee, Liberia, and Tawakkol Karman, Yemen.

2010: Liu Xiaobo, China.

2009: Barack Obama, United States.

2008: Martti Ahtisaari, Finland.

2007: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and Al Gore, United States.

2006: Muhammad Yunus, Bangladesh and Grameen Bank, Bangladesh.

2005: International Atomic Energy Agency and Mohamed ElBaradei, Egypt.

2004: Wangari Maathai, Kenya.

2003: Shirin Ebadi, Iran.

2002: Jimmy Carter, United States.

2001: United Nations and Kofi Annan, Ghana.

2000: Kim Dae-jung, South Korea.

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