Nobel Peace Prize
Paris, October 7 , 2011
President Sarkozy very warmly congratulates the three exceptional women who have just been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s unwavering commitment to peace, social justice and development has allowed Liberia to turn the page on 14 years of violence and a breakdown of law and order. Beyond her country’s borders, Mrs Johnson Sirleaf also symbolizes the growth of democracy in Africa. On 24 May 2007, she was the first figure from the African continent to be welcomed to the Elysée Palace by President Sarkozy, at the start of his mandate.
Mrs Leymah Roberta Gbowee’s brave action illustrates the irreplaceable role of civil society in Liberia. Her commitment against violence and in favour of women’s rights and child protection kept hope alive, even in the darkest hours, and paved the way for the country’s recovery.
By honouring these two admirable Liberian women, this Nobel prize is also highlighting and encouraging Liberia’s renewal. President Sarkozy very much hopes the elections which Liberia is preparing to hold will confirm the solidity of her fledgling democracy. He calls on all the Liberian political parties to work to that end.
President Sarkozy pays tribute to Mrs Tawakul Karman’s resolute and determined commitment to supporting freedom of expression and the rights of women and young people in Yemen.
The awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Mrs Tawakul Karman is a tribute to those Arab peoples who are courageously expressing their aspiration to freedom and democracy, an aspiration to which the Head of State gives his full support./.