Nobel Peace Prize for Juan Manuel Santos

Just a week ago the people of Colombia rejected his peace deal with the Farc rebels; now he has been named as the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos has been distinguished for his efforts to end the civil war in his country. Is the prize going to the right person this year?

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Infowar (GR) /

Reward for a dirty war

Infowar criticises the decision to award the Nobel Prize to Santos:

“The dirty war that the Colombian state has been waging for decades with paramilitary troops and ongoing US guidance and financing has been rewarded with the Nobel Peace Prize. ... Clearly the Farc forces were no saints in this war - above all in recent years when the accusations that they were participating in the drug trade multiplied. But equating the rebels with death squads only serves the purposes of the US, which used the battle - as well as the so-called war on drugs - to boost its presence in its 'back yard' and create a buffer against leftist governments in neighbouring countries. As expected, the award went to someone who does honour to Alfred Nobel, namely a representative of the Colombian state. Because let's not forget, Alfred Nobel was himself an arms dealer.”

Dnevnik (SI) /

Farc leader also deserves award

It is regrettable that Farc leader Rodrigo Londono Echeverri didn't also win the prize, Dnevnik complains:

“President Santos has without doubt put an end to the myth of war as an unavoidable state of affairs in Colombia. With his vision, his perseverance, his courage and his skill he has convinced the Colombians and the rebels that war is not the only solution and that it takes two to wage a war, as it takes (at least) two to make peace. It's a pity the Nobel Committee itself didn't reaffirm this truth and make the Farc rebel group or its leader Rodrigo Londono prizewinners of equal standing.”

Berlingske (DK) /

Hope merits a prize

It is Juan Manuel Santos' attitude that has won him the prize, Berlingske explains:

“In the referendum the opinion prevailed that Farc should not be allowed to get away with all the violence and murders it committed over many years so easily. And quite likely the people are right. But the hopes of peace haven't died yet. When they signed the peace deal the parties understood that peace couldn't be achieved through military victory alone but only through negotiations. It is noteworthy that after the referendum both sides immediately decided to stick to the ceasefire. So there is still hope that Farc and Santos will continue to negotiate. Santos certainly wants this. That is why he won the Nobel Peace Prize.”