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The panel that awards the Nobel Peace Prize said Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali, who won the honour in 2019, bears a “special responsibility” to end the ongoing bloodshed in the Tigray region.

Thousands of people have been killed and wounded, women and girls have been raped by military forces, and more than 2 million citizens have been displaced from their families and means of livelihood. The Ethiopian Prime Minister has rationalised the genocide that a nation on its way to “prosperity” would experience a few “rough patches” that would create “blisters”.

There have been calls for members of the Noble committee who awarded the 2019 peace prize to P.M Abiy Ahmed to collectively resign their honourable positions at the Nobel committee in protest and defiance.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali receives his Nobel Peace Prize

 

Ethiopia’s prime minister and 2019 Nobel peace prize laureate Abiy Ahmed, second from left, with members of the Norwegian awarding committee at the ceremony in 2018 in Oslo. Photograph: Erik Valestrand/Getty

The conflict in Tigray has sparked calls to strip Abiy of the Nobel, but this is not possible under the award’s statutes.

The Norwegian committee said it could not comment on what factors were emphasised when the prize was awarded to Abiy beyond “the reasons given in connection with the award”, as the panel’s discussions are confidential. Abiy’s prize “was awarded on the basis of his efforts and the legitimate expectations that existed in 2019”, said Berit Reiss-Andersen, the chair of The Norwegian Nobel Committee. “The peace initiatives that Abiy Ahmed launched and for which he received the Nobel Prize were based on his contribution to the peace agreement with Eritrea and his comprehensive political initiative for democracy and the development of civil rights,” she added.

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