Nobel Peace Prize 2016 awarded to Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos

Juan Manuel Santos initiated a peace deal with FARC rebels in Colombia to end the 50-year old civil war.

By: AP | Oslo | Updated: October 7, 2016 4:22 pm
nobel peace prize, nobel peace prize 2016, peace prize 2016, peace prize, juan manuel santos, colombia president, colombian president Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos has been awarded the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize (REUTERS photo/John Vizcaino)

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for his efforts to end a five-decades-long civil war that has killed more than 200,000 people in the South American country. The award came just days after Colombian voters narrowly rejected a peace deal that Santos helped bring about.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee said that rejection doesn’t mean the peace process is dead. “The referendum was not a vote for or against peace,” it said. “What the ‘No’ side rejected was not the desire for peace, but a specific peace agreement.” The committee did not cite Santos’ counterpart in the peace negotiations, Rodrigo Londono, the leader of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.

Santos and Londono, better known by his nom de guerre Timochenko, signed the peace deal last month, ending a half-century of hostilities, only to see a major setback in the shock vote against the agreement in a referendum six days later.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee said it believes that Santos, “despite the ‘No’ majority vote in the referendum, has brought the bloody conflict significantly closer to a peaceful solution.”

It said the award should also be seen “as a tribute to the Colombian people who, despite great hardships and abuses, have not given up hope of a just peace, and to all the parties who have contributed to the peace process.” The agreement was reached during more than five years of at first secret negotiations in Cuba.

Santos, 65, is an unlikely peacemaker. The Harvard-educated scion of one of Colombia’s wealthiest families, as defense minister a decade ago, he was responsible for some of the FARC’s biggest military setbacks. Those included a 2008 cross-border raid into Ecuador that took out a top rebel commander and the stealth rescue of three Americans held captive by the rebels for more than five years.

Under the peace deal he negotiated, rebels who turn over their weapons and confess to war crimes will be spared time in jail and the FARC will get 10 seats in congress through 2026 to smooth their transition into a political movement.

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  1. P
    Oct 7, 2016 at 11:34 am
    I deeply regret that Shri Modiji was not awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Just his visit to Nawaz Sharif's home itself enough to justify the prize. Proud Bhakt!
    1. K
      Oct 7, 2016 at 1:25 pm
      NO-BALL PEICE FOR Avatar PuRRRRRRsh Shri ModiJi.
      1. B
        Oct 7, 2016 at 1:41 pm
        I Appreciate The Decision Of The Nobel Peace Committee.
        1. B
          Oct 7, 2016 at 12:22 pm
          All bhakts should gherao the Nobel committee members till they announce Modiji's name for next year's Nobel Peace prize.
          1. M
            Oct 7, 2016 at 9:36 am
            i think people who are working for peace is a great acknowledge to them
            1. A
              Oct 7, 2016 at 7:09 pm
              A lot of people were expecting it to be given to jumla king and the team - for bringing to us the ultimate "achhe din"....
              1. A
                Oct 7, 2016 at 11:34 am
                This is a islamophobic decision that also underplays the Syrian civil war. If it was Angela Merkel, other state head might get inspired to solve the refugee crisis or if it was white helmets other organizations may be inspired to help the Syrians. At a time when joint efforts are required to solve the biggest humanitarian crisis after world war 2, racism and anti Islamism has made its way to the prestigious noble award committee. They have chosen the hero of a conflict that 200000 in 50 years to that of a hero of a conflict that has killed 600000 in 4 years.
                1. H
                  Hanglur Srinivas Varna
                  Oct 7, 2016 at 11:54 am
                  SOB Ravishankar claimed that he was instrumental for signing the peace deal, and he was shedding saliva to get Nobel prize. Anyway, he was only bogus saint, and everybody knows about his crazy claims like this. He can try to negotiate peace deal in India with terrorists in Kashmir and stan. If he manages to stay alive, then he deserve many Nobel prize for peace!
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