Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize
US President Barack Obama has won the Nobel Peace Prize for his "extraordinary" efforts to reduce the world's stockpile of nuclear weapons and working for world peace.
By Andrew Hough
Published: 10:03AM BST 09 Oct 2009
The committee said it attached special importance to Mr Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons Photo: AP
Less than a year after taking office, Mr Obama won the prestigious award after calling for worldwide disarmament.
He had also worked to restart the stalled Middle East peace process since taking office in January.
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In an announcement in Oslo, he was honoured "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples," the head of the Norwegian Nobel Committee Thorbjoern Jagland said.
"Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as (Mr) Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future," the committee said.
"His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world's population."
The committee said it attached special importance to Mr Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons.
"(Mr) Obama has as president created a new climate in international politics. Multilateral diplomacy has regained a central position, with emphasis on the role that the United Nations and other international institutions can play."
The prize worth 10 million Swedish crowns (£878,000) will be handed over in the Norway capital on Dec. 10.
Mr Obama's name had been mentioned in speculation before the award but many Nobel watchers believed it was too early to award the president.
Theodore Roosevelt won the award in 1906 and Woodrow Wilson won in 1919.
Former President Jimmy Carter won the award in 2002, while former Vice President Al Gore shared the 2007 prize with the U.N. panel on climate change.
The Nobel committee received a record 205 nominations for this year's prize.
Former Finnish president Martti Ahtisaari won the award in 2008.
In his 1895 will, Alfred Nobel stipulated that the peace prize should go "to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between the nations and the abolition or reduction of standing armies and the formation and spreading of peace congresses".
The committee has taken a wide interpretation of Nobel's guidelines, expanding the prize beyond peace mediation to include efforts to combat poverty, disease and climate change. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldne ... Prize.html