The winners of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize have been talking about their work and what the award means to them.
Three women shared the accolade – Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberian peace activist Leymah Gbowee and Yemeni democracy activist Tawakul Karman.
Johnson Sirleaf is Africa’s first female elected head of state. Fellow Liberian Leymah Gbowee mobilized women across ethnic and religious divides to help end the country’s 14-year bloody civil war.
“All I keep hearing in my head is the song of praise to God,” Gbowee said. “With or without the prize, I would have continued. So this is just to reenergise me, giving me a larger platform. This is a huge opportunity that I’m going to maximise to the fullest, getting women’s voices to the table.”
Tawakul Karman plays a key role in Yemen’s ongoing pro-democracy uprising.
“This prize is, in reality, a victory for the peaceful nature of the Yemeni revolution,” she said. “It shows that this revolution has impressed a large section of the international community.”
Karman has been briefly detained during protests against President Ali Abdullah Saleh but has vowed the revolution to topple him will continue.