WASHINGTON, Dec. 11, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 2012 Nobel Peace Prize was presented to leaders of the European Union in Oslo, Norway, yesterday in recognition of the EU's role in advancing the causes of peace, reconciliation, democracy and human rights.
Ambassador João Vale de Almeida, Head of the European Union Delegation to the United States, said in a video that the award is a powerful recognition of the EU's past achievements in moving Europe from war to peace and reconciling countries and peoples around the project of democracy, freedom, respect for human rights and cooperation. Moreover, it is an inspiration and encouragement for the Union's future action.
Noting that he lived under dictatorship for 17 years in Portugal, Ambassador Vale de Almeida said, "I am particularly aware of what it means to be free, to live in a democracy, to have our human rights respected and the European Union was crucial in providing this to my country and many other countries in Europe – in Eastern Europe, those who were behind the iron curtain, in Spain and Greece that had been under dictatorship as well - and today we are 500 million people together in peace. I am extremely proud of that."
Ambassador Vale de Almeida pointed out that the peace prize to some extent is also an American prize because of America's strong support for European integration over the years.
SOURCE Delegation of the European Union to the United States