Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Nobel Peace Prize 2019

The Norwegian Committee applauds the reconciliation with Eritrea and the mediation efforts of Abiy Ahmed in the region

The Norwegian Committee has awarded the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Abiy Ahmed, with the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts in favor of peace and international cooperation and, “in particular, for his decisive initiative to resolve the border conflict with the neighbor Eritrea. ”

Both countries fought between 1998 and 2000 in a war that claimed more than 70,000 lives, but Ahmed's arrival in power in April 2018 was also a point in bilateral relations that resulted in a reconciliation agreement that, by Eritrean party was ratified by the president, Isaias Afwerki.

Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Nobel Peace Prize 2019
Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Nobel Peace Prize 2019

The Committee has recognized that “peace does not arise from the actions of a single party” and has applauded the role of Afwerki, but has wanted to personalize in Abiy the recognition of those who work for reconciliation throughout the region. The jury also recalled that the Ethiopian Prime Minister has been involved in mediation processes between Eritrea and Djibouti and between Kenya and Somalia, as well as between the Government and the opposition in Sudan.

The Norwegian Committee has also stated that Abiy has initiated internally “important reforms that give many citizens hope for a better life and future.” In its first hundred days of government, it raised the state of emergency, amnesty thousands of political prisoners, softened censorship, legalized opposition groups, separated leaders suspected of corruption and increased “significantly” the representativeness of women in the spheres of power.


The jury has also warned that there are “many challenges” to resolve, including ethnic conflicts – “we have seen worrying examples in recent months and weeks …”. In fact, he has assumed that there may be someone who seems to recognize Abiy prematurely, given these challenges, but believes that “his efforts deserve recognition and need support.”

“Ethiopia is the second most populous country in Africa and the largest economy in East Africa. A peaceful, stable and successful Ethiopia will involve many positive side effects and will help strengthen the fraternity between nations and peoples in the region,” said the Norwegian Committee. of the Nobel.

Abiy succeeds Congolese surgeon Denis Mukwege and Yazidi activist Nadia Murad, who received him 'ex aequo' in 2018. For this year, a total of 301 applications from individuals and organizations had been submitted, although the list is secret and the Norwegian Committee does not make it public until after 50 years.

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