The Norwegian Nobel Committee has awarded the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize to the World Food Programme.
The United Nations agency was honoured for its efforts to combat hunger, its contribution to bettering conditions for peace in conflict-affected areas, and for acting as a driving force in efforts to prevent the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict.
There were 318 candidates — 211 individuals and 107 organisations – for the award.
The prize comes with a cash award worth £850,000 and a gold medal.
The medal will be handed out at a ceremony in Oslo on December 10, the anniversary of prize founder Alfred Nobel’s death. This year’s event will be scaled down due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The announcement was made in the Norwegian capital by Berit Reiss-Andersen, chairwoman of the Nobel Committee.
The panel said the coronavirus pandemic has added to the hunger faced by millions of people around the world and called on governments to ensure the WFP and other aid organisations receive the financial support necessary to feed them.
“With this year’s award, the (committee) wishes to turn the eyes of the world to the millions of people who suffer from or face the threat of hunger,” said Mr Reiss-Andersen.
“The World Food Programme plays a key role in multilateral co-operation in making food security an instrument of peace.
“The World Food Programme contributes daily to advancing the fraternity of nations mentioned in Alfred Nobel’s will.”
– On Monday, the Nobel Committee awarded the prize for physiology and medicine to scientists who discovered the liver-ravaging hepatitis C virus.
– Tuesday’s prize for physics honoured breakthroughs in understanding the mysteries of cosmic black holes.
– The chemistry prize on Wednesday went to scientists behind a powerful gene-editing tool.
– The literature prize was awarded to US poet Louise Gluck on Thursday for her “candid and uncompromising” work.
Still to come next week is the prize for outstanding work in the field of economics.