The Nobel Peace Prize Awards in Oslo
From: Sunday, December 9 2007, 7:00 pm
to: Monday, December 10 2007, 6:59 pm
At the same time as the other Nobel awards are handed out in Stockholm, the Norwegian Nobel Institute hands out the famous Peace prize, awarded annually to individuals or organisations whose work and achievements have promoted world peace and global cooperation. The celebration itself takes place in the Oslo Town Hall, R√?¬•dhuset, near Aker Brygge, and it is attended by the king as well as the highest functionaries of the state.
The Peace Prize presentation has become an international event whose media coverage and significance far surpasses those of the other prizes. It is traditional that the recipient gives a speech on or immediately after the occasion, which is then published in a special booklet. Recipients in recent years have included charity organisations and freedom fighters, as well as groups promoting such causes as reducing nuclear armaments and banning landmines. Yasser Arafat, Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin famously shared the Prize in 1994, sparking long and bitter controversies.
Nobel himself was a reclusive, Swedish-born genius with a passionate interest in chemistry, history and philosophy, and a remarkable aptitude for learning foreign languages. Though highly intelligent, he never actually sat any university exams, preferring to pursue his own line of investigations. Most of his life was spent managing a growing number of factories throughout Europe, but he harboured a secret dream of serving mankind. By the end of his life he was one of the richest men in Europe, a multi-millionaire and holder of 355 patents. He was also, paradoxically for such a shy and reclusive man, the inventor of dynamite (perhaps the reason why he decided to invest his money in a peace prize).
The ceremony takes place on 10 December every year, and the decision of the jury is usually made public in the middle of October.