Abiy Ahmed was recognized for his efforts in ending the 20-year-long war between Ethiopia and Eritrea.
The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed “for his efforts to achieve peace and international cooperation” in resolving the border conflict with neighboring Eritrea, the Norwegian Nobel Committee in Oslo said Friday.
Berit Reiss-Andersen, the chairwoman of the five-member committee that made the award, credited Abiy with a peace initiative aimed at ending two decades of conflict between the two east-African neighbors that began over border disputes in 1998 only a few years after Eritrea gained independence.
When Abiy took office, he freed political prisoners and managed in the same year to sign a peace deal with the Eritrean leader, Isaias Afwerki — agreeing in the process to cede disputed land to his country’s erstwhile enemy.
“Peace does not arise from the actions of one party alone,” Reiss-Andersen said. “When Prime Minister Abiy reached out his hand, President Afwerki grasped it, and helped to formalize the peace process between the two countries.”