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Peace prize: "Unexpected, important"

12 October 2012

Photo: Dominik Leitner/Flickr (CC)

On Friday, the European Union was named the recipient of the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize. In a blog post, EU Home affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmström commented on the award. "My first thoughts: Most welcome, unexpected, important. Unexpected, naturally, as there is are so many across the globe fighting for peace and democracy", she wrote, adding:

"In these times of financial unrest and a faltering faith in the European project, it is worth reminding us why the EU was founded in the first place. To remember how important it is for Europe to solve its problems together, and how distant such cooperation seemed not too many decades ago."

In her blog post, Malmström also underlined that the EU must be vigilant when values such as human rights and non-discrimination are undermined both inside and outside the union.

In its announcement Friday in Oslo, the Norwegian Nobel Committee stated:

"The union and its forerunners have for over six decades contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe."

More: Cecilia Malmström's full blog post and a statement from European Commission President José Manuel Barroso