The European Union has been awarded the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize for helping to “transform most of Europe from a continent of war to a continent of peace.” Announcing its decision on Oct. 12, the Nobel Peace Prize committee stated: “The union and its forerunners have for over six decades contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy, and human rights in Europe.”
European Union Ambassador to the United States João Vale de Almeida said: “The Nobel Peace Prize recognizes the great achievements the EU has made in regional integration for peace. What started with six countries forming a Coal and Steel Community following World War II to help secure peace and stability has grown into a Union of 27 — soon to be 28 countries — working together. We are grateful for the indispensable support we have received from the United States over the years, and together with my fellow EU Member States Ambassadors here in Washington, D.C., I will continue to work closely with our American partners to promote peace, democracy, and prosperity around the world.”
In a joint statement, President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy and President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso said, ”It is a tremendous honor for the European Union to be awarded the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize.
“This prize is the strongest possible recognition of the deep political motives behind our Union: the unique effort by ever more European states to overcome war and divisions and to jointly shape a continent of peace and prosperity. It is a prize not just for the project and the institutions embodying a common interest, but for the 500 million citizens living in our Union.”