The Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize to the World Food Programme, the world’s largest humanitarian organisation addressing hunger and promoting food security.
The committee said it awarded the prize for the World Food Programme’s “efforts to combat hunger, for its contribution to bettering conditions for peace in conflict-affected areas and for acting as a driving force in efforts to prevent the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict”.
As the number of Covid-19 cases worldwide surpassed 36.5 million, with more than 1 million deaths, the committee cited the link between the pandemic and hunger and cited the World Food Programme’s efforts.
“The coronavirus pandemic has contributed to a strong upsurge in the number of victims of hunger in the world,” the committee said. It noted that in places such as Yemen, Congo, Nigeria, South Sudan and Burkina Faso, “the combination of violent conflict and the pandemic has led to a dramatic rise in the number of people living on the brink of starvation. In the face of the pandemic, the World Food Programme has demonstrated an impressive ability to intensify its efforts. As the organisation itself has stated, ‘Until the day we have a medical vaccine, food is the best vaccine against chaos’.”
The World Food Programme partners with both governments and nongovernmental organisations, including Caritas Internationalis and national Catholic charities around the world.
In a statement after the prize was awarded, the World Food Program said: “The Nobel Peace Prize is not WFP’s alone. We work closely with government, organisations and private-sector partners whose passion for helping the hungry and vulnerable equals ours. We could not possibly help anyone without them.”
Picture: Berit Reiss-Andersen, chair of the Nobel Committee, shows a displayed image with the logo of the World Food Programme in Oslo, Norway. WFP, which partners with both governments and nongovernmental organisations, including Caritas Internationalis and national Catholic charities around the world, was awarded the 2020 Nobel Peace Price. (CNS photo/Stian Lysberg Solum, NTB via Reuters).