Why Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Won the Nobel Peace Prize

Ethiopia's young Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali has been awarded the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize. In conferring the honor, the Nobel Prize Committee said the Ethiopian leader was awarded the prize for his efforts to achieve peace and international cooperation, and in particular for his decisive initiative to resolve the border conflict with neighboring Eritrea.

These peace efforts between Ethiopia and Eritrea began in earnest in 2018, culminating in a truly remarkable moment 0n June 26 that year, when Eritrean leaders flew to the capitol of Ethiopia for peace talks. This was the first a high level meeting between these erstwhile foes in nearly twenty years. In the late 1990s, the two countries fought a brutal war and despite a ceasefire agreement, the two countries remained actively hostile to each other. But in June 2018, that suddenly�and swiftly� began to change. Peace was breaking out in the Horn of Africa � and the peace agreement they signed has held.

This can help explain why Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has won the Nobel Peace Prize.

At the time, I spoke with Michael Woldermairam, an Assistant Professor of International Relations and Political Science at the Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University who explained how these two irreconcilable foes so quickly came to the peace table. What changed, he explained, was a change in leadership in Ethiopia that brought the reformer Abiy to power in April 2018.

Source: UN Dispatch