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Anti Nuclear Weapons Campaign Coalition Wins Nobel Peace Prize

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International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) has been awarded the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee said Friday that it decided to recognize ICAN "for its work to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and for its ground-breaking efforts to achieve a treaty-based prohibition of such weapons".

ICAN is a global coalition of 468 non-governmental civil society organizations spread across 100 countries promoting adherence to and implementation of the United Nations nuclear weapon ban treaty.

Nobel committee chairperson Berit Reiss-Andersen announced the award in Norwegian capital Oslo. Citing the North Korea issue, she said "We live in a world where the risk of nuclear weapons being used is greater than it has been for a long time."

North Korea is actively developing its nuclear program, mainly targeting the United States, which is a nuclear power. Last month at the UN General Assembly, US President Donald Trump threatened to totally destroy the Communist nation if his country is forced to defend itself or its allies.

The campaign helped bring about this landmark global agreement, known as the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which was adopted in New York on 7 July 2017.

122 nations adopted the agreement designed to ban and eventually eliminate all nuclear weapons, but none of the nine known nuclear powers - including Britain and the United States - endorsed it.

Beatrice Fihn, Executive Director of the Geneva-based group, told reporters that the prize was a surprise but it was a huge signal that the group's work was needed and appreciated.

ICAN said this prize is a tribute to the tireless efforts of millions of campaigners and concerned citizens who loudly protested nuclear weapons, and to the survivors of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and victims of nuclear test explosions around the world.

The organization called on all nations to declare their unequivocal opposition to nuclear weapons, and those nations that have not signed the Treaty to sign and ratify it.

The prize money of 9 million Swedish kronor ($1.1 million) will be awarded to the laureate at a ceremony in December.

by RTT Staff Writer

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