Trump opponents rejoice as US President is snubbed for Nobel peace prize in favour of campaigners against sexual violence

The US president and Kim Jong-un had been frontrunners ahead of the announcement

Andrew Griffin
Friday 05 October 2018 10:35
Nobel Peace Prize 2018: Winners announced as Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad

Donald Trump's opponents are rejoicing after the US president lost out on the Nobel Peace Prize.

Along with Kim Jong-un, he had been a frontrunner to win the award among bookmakers. He had been nominated by Republican lawmakers who said he should win "in recognition of his work to end the Korean War, denuclearize the Korean peninsula, and bring peace to the region".

But the committee gave the prestigious award instead to campaigners who have fought against sexual violence. Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad were praised by the committee "for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict".

Many Twitter users took to the site to rejoice that the president had been skipped over for the award.

"How sweetly ironic that the Nobel peace prize winners are anti-sexual violence campaigners, when you thought you were in with a shout," one posted to the president. "Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un's nominations beaten by heroes," wrote another.

Allies of the president had already used the possibility he would win to mock his opponents. Lindsay Graham said that Mr Trump deserved the award for what he claimed were successes fighting Isis and taking on Iran.

"If Donald Trump gets the Nobel Peace Prize, liberals all over the world would jump out of buildings," the Republican senator said before laughing.

Mr Trump and his allies have been largely silent since the winners of the award were announced, which happened during the very early morning US time.

Nadia Murad, one of the two winners of the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize, has become a spokeswoman for Yazidi women abused by the Islamic State group.

In December 2015, she told the U.N. Security Council how she and thousands of other Yazidi women and girls were abducted, held in captivity and repeatedly raped after the Iraqi area of Sinjar fell to IS militants in August 2014. She escaped after three months in captivity.

A year after most IS-held areas were retaken by Iraqi security forces, around 3,000 Yazidi women and girls are still missing, most presumed dead.

At the age of 23, Ms Murad was named the U.N.'s first Goodwill Ambassador for the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee says that Denis Mukwege is "the foremost, most unifying symbol, both nationally and internationally, of the struggle to end sexual violence in war and armed conflicts."

Dr Mukwege and his team have treated thousands of patients who have been raped or sexually abused in Congo's long civil war.

"The importance of Dr Mukwege's enduring, dedicated and selfless efforts in this field cannot be overstated. He has repeatedly condemned impunity for mass rape and criticized the Congolese government and other countries for not doing enough to stop the use of sexual violence against women as a strategy and weapon of war," the committee said in its citation Friday.

Additional reporting by agencies

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