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Brussels, 18 May 2009

European Commissioner Louis Michel awarded African Peace Prize

European Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid, Louis Michel, is to receive the "African Time for Peace Prize".

This is the first edition of the prize, which will be awarded every year to three personalities and/or institutions – two from Africa and one from abroad – recognized for their achievements in the fields of peace promotion in Africa and global solidarity.

Commissioner Michel said, "I am truly honoured to have been awarded this prize and to be part of such a distinguished group of winners. Africa and its entire people from across the continent deserve to live in peace and prosperity. This has been the goal of my efforts over many years by working in partnership with them. I will continue to work - with all my energy and determination - to ensure that the winner of the ultimate prize of peace and greater prosperity is indeed Africa and its many nations and peoples."

This year's winners are the African Union, former South African President Nelson Mandela and Louis Michel. Each winner, or their representative, will be presented with the prize of an African golden sculpture representing the continent at the award ceremony. Commissioner Michel will receive his prize in recognition of his life-time's work for the promotion of peace in Africa as a politician, former Belgian Foreign Minister and now European Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid.

The "Africa Time for Peace Prize" has been created to raise public awareness on peace issues, to promote the values of solidarity and to valorise African peace and development initiatives. No date has been announced for the ceremony yet.

Candidates may be nominated for their achievements within the cultural, institutional, economic, social and political fields. The "Africa Time for Peace Prize" jury is composed of Members of the Bureau of the Time for Peace, namely Lazare Sehoueto (former Minister – Benin), Dr. André Tolentino (Former Minister – Cape Verde), Professor Mbulelo Mzamane (South Africa), Dr. Nestor Bidadanure (Journalist), Aubin Godjo (Kilimandjaro Institut) and David Gakunzi (Media and development specialist).

The award is sponsored by the Africa Peace Foundation – a non-political and non-profit making organisation aiming to promote sustainable peace in Africa by addressing the root causes of conflicts with an emphasis on political, social, economic and cultural aspects of conflicts.

For more information on the prize:

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