Veteran Finnish diplomat Named Winner Of Prestigious UNESCO Peace Prize

The former Finnish president and current United Nations
envoy Martti Ahtisaari was named today as the winner of the annual peace prize
of the Organization’s cultural agency. The former Finnish president and current
United Nations envoy Martti Ahtisaari was named today as the winner of the
annual peace prize of the Organization’s cultural agency.
    ”Mr. Ahtisaari, who also founded the non-governmental
organization (NGO) Crisis Management Initiative, was chosen for “his lifetime
contribution to world peace”, said the head of the international jury that
awards the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize of the UN Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
    Expressing his great pleasure at this recognition, the
agency’s Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura said that Mr. Ahtisaari’s career in
promoting dialogue and world peace mirrors UNESCO’s ideals.
    This year’s winner, who served as the President of Finland
from 1994 to 2000, has carried out many peace missions for the UN in such
places as Jenin and the Horn of Africa and currently serves as the
Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Future Status Process for Kosovo.
    In the framework of the Crisis Management Initiative, he
organized a week-long meeting between Iraq Muslim Sunni and Shiite groups to
kick-start dialogue between the communities. Additionally, he facilitated the
peace process between Indonesia and Aceh separatists, which led to the signing
of a peace treaty, bringing an end to the province’s conflict.
    The Prize was established in 1989 by UNESCO’s General
Conference to honour living people or institutions which have contributed
significantly to the promotion, research or safeguarding of peace while
complying with the Charter of the United Nations and UNESCO’s constitution. It
was named for the first president of Côte d’Ivoire, the late Mr.
Houphouët-Boigny.
    Previous winners include South Africa’s Nelson Mandela and
Frederik W. De Klerk; Yitzhak Rabin, Shimon Peres and Yasser Arafat; King Juan
Carlos of Spain and former United States President Jimmy Carter; and Senegalese
President Abdoulaye Wade.

Wikipedia English – The Free Encycl…
Martti Ahtisaari
Martti Oiva Kalevi Ahtisaari (IPA: ) (born June 231937 ViipuriFinland) is a former President of Finland (19942000) and a UN diplomat and mediator, noted for his international peace work. Currently he is the UN representative and mediator during the Vienna peace talks that will determine the final status of Serbia‘s southern province, Kosovo (which has been under UN administration since 1999). In his proposal to the UN Security Council he has recommended supervised independence for Kosovo.

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