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Statement by President Michael D. Higgins - Juan Manuel Santos

Date: Fri 7th Oct, 2016 | 11:47

President Michael D. Higgins has conveyed his congratulations to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos on being awarded the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize.

"On behalf of the people of Ireland I wish to congratulate Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, along with the people of Colombia, on being awarded the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize.

The decision by the Nobel Committee to award the Nobel Peace Prize to President Santos for 'his resolute efforts to bring the country's more than 50-year-long civil war to an end' is both welcome and deserved. The award is also a recognition and encouragement for all those in Colombia and further afield who are seeking to resolve conflict through peaceful means.

In honouring President Santos the Committee is recognising all those who are struggling to build democracy in support of support human rights and the rule of law.

This award also reminds us that the path to political reform and sustainable development is an arduous one. It requires leadership and determination, and a recognition of the necessity of being able to place oneself in the shoes of the other.

I would like to pay tribute to all of the diplomatic efforts that have gone into building the Colombian peace process, which has very recently suffered reverses but which is of the utmost importance to the people of Colombia. I would like to compliment all those involved for their part in bringing the process to this point."