[Brussels, 07 October 2011] The European Women’s Lobby (EWL) is delighted at the announcement that this year’s Nobel Peace Prize will, for the first time ever, be awarded to three women for ‘their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work’. The winners are Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Leymah Gbowee of Liberia and Tawakul Karman of Yemen.
‘This award is a welcome recognition of the importance of the work of women’s associations worldwide, and also a rare tribute to the contributions of women to peace processes worldwide,’ said Brigitte Triems, President of the EWL, in reaction to the announcement from Oslo this morning.
So far, only 15 women have ever won the Nobel Prize for Peace since its establishment in 1901, as compared to 85 men and 23 institutions.
Mrs Sirleaf is Africa’s first female elected head of state, Ms Gbowee a Liberian peace activist and Ms Karman is a leading figure in Yemen’s pro-democracy movement.
Announcing the prize, Nobel Committee chairman Thorbjorn Jagland said: ‘We cannot achieve democracy and lasting peace in the world unless women achieve the same opportunities as men to influence developments at all levels of society.’
Part of the work of the EWL is dedicated to the promotion of women in peace processes and the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. [More information is available on the EWL website under International Action for Women’s Rights.]
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