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Pakistan joins Nobel Peace Prize global celebrations

Islamabad: Pakistani people stand united with peace-builders around the world on December 10 to celebrate the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize and women’s participation in building a secure world, said Aman-o-Nisa: Pakistan Women’s Coalition Against Extremism in a statement issued here today.

The Nobel Peace Prize for 2011 will be awarded in equal parts to Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (Liberia), Leymah Gbowee (Liberia) and Tawakkul Karman (Yemen) for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work. The December 10 Peace Prize ceremony falls on Human Rights Day, an annual commemoration of the adoption of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

“In bestowing this award, the Nobel Committee has shined a light on the essential work of women preventing and stopping war across the globe,” said Aman-o-Nisa (AoN) National Coordinator, Mossarat Qadeem on the occasion. “The people of Pakistan join the international community in recognizing the importance of women’s leadership to achieve sustainable peace in the world.”

Earlier in the day, Aman-o-Nisa and Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI), Islamabad jointly screened for the general public a documentary “Pray the Devil Back Home”, which narrates the heroic struggle of Liberian women led by Leymah Gbowee and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to bring peace in their civil war-torn country.

The AoN National Coordinator informed that both the Liberian Nobel Laureates as well as members of Pakistan’s Aman-o-Nisa are members of the global Women Waging Peace Network, which is dedicated to empowering women to build peace in the world.

“The moving story of Liberia’s women peace-builders serves as an inspiration for millions of Pakistani women who have bravely faced the horrors of extremist terror stalking our homeland,” said Ms. Qadeem.

“The 2011 Nobel Peace Prize’s recognition of women peace-builders of Africa and the Middle East gives hope to Pakistani women who continue their largely unsung and invisible efforts for building social cohesion and sustainable peace in our country.”

The AoN National Coordinator said that the Coalition is committed to the cause of peace in Pakistan with the belief that women play a major role in preventing conflict, moderating extremism, and rebuilding conflict-affected communities.

“As a result of the violence and marginalization that they experience, women best understand the needs of their communities,” said Ms. Qadeem. “They are better able and more willing to bridge divides, promote community cohesion, and work towards peace.”

Aman-o-Nisa is an independent body consisting of 20 Pakistani women from civil society, media, academia, public and private sectors. Supported by PAIMAN Alumni Trust (Islamabad) and the Institute for Inclusive Security (Washington D.C.), the Coalition comprises members from all four provinces of Pakistan, the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, and Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

For more information, contact:
Faisal Nadeem Gorchani
Coordinator, Policy Advocacy and Outreach
Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI)
38 Embassy Road, G-6/3 Islamabad, Pakistan
Postal Code: 44000
Tel: +92-51-2278134, (Ext: 113)
Fax: +92-51-2278135
Cell: 00-92-333-559 2210
Email: main@sdpi.org

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