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Ethiopian PM Abiy Ahmed wins 2019 UNESCO Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize

(CGTN Africa) — Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has been named as laureate of the 2019 edition of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize for his role in pacifying his country and the Horn of African region.

Abiy has been credited for ending hostilities both within Ethiopia and the region. He is considered to be the driving force behind a peace agreement between his country and Eritrea.

The awarding jury attributed Abiy’s selection to his work in ensuring reforms in his country aimed at consolidating democracy and social cohesion.

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The Jury met on 29 April at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, during which it picked the Ethiopian PM as the laureate of the 2019 edition of the prize, which will mark the 30th anniversary of its inception.

The awarding jury included former Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, former French president François Hollande, Princess Sumaya bint El Hassan of Jordan – UNESCO Special Envoy for science for peace, Mr Michel Camdessus (France) – Former Director General of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Professor Muhammad Yunus (Bangladesh), founder of Grameen Bank – Nobel Peace Laureate (2006) and Mr. Forest Whitaker (United States of America), founder of the Peace and Development Initiative.

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In 1989, in order to pay tribute to President Félix Houphouet-Boigny’s action for peace in the world, 120 countries sponsored a resolution unanimously adopted by UNESCO’s Member States to establish the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Prize – UNESCO Peace Prize. The Prize is intended to honor living individuals and active public or private institutions or bodies that have made a significant contribution to promoting, seeking, safeguarding or maintaining peace in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and the Constitution of UNESCO.