EU wins 2012 Nobel Peace Prize
The Nobel Peace Prize was on Friday awarded to the European Union, an
institution wracked by the euro crisis but credited with bringing more
than a half century of peace to a continent ripped apart by World War
"The union and its forerunners have for over six decades contributed
to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human
rights in Europe," Nobel Committee president Thorbjoern Jagland said in
In a first reaction from one of the three main EU institutions,
European Parliament head German Socialist Martin Schulz said on Twitter
he was "deeply touched, honoured that the EU has won the Nobel Peace
Prize. Reconciliation is what the EU is about.
It can serve as an inspiration." European Commission president Jose
Manuel Barroso said it was a "great honour" for the entire 27-member
bloc.The prize for the EU, however, is a shocker at a time when European
solidarity is facing its most daunting challenge in decades amid deep
rifts between a south drowning in debt and a wealthier north, led by
Germany, only reluctantly coming to the rescue.
Whether or not that begrudging assistance will keep the European
project afloat remains to be seen, but the deep crisis has broadened the
gulf already felt between citizens in the different member states and a
Brussels long seen as too distant and bureaucratic. "The EU is currently
undergoing grave economic difficulties and considerable social unrest,"
Jagland acknowledged Friday.