Tunisia’s Nobel Peace Prize winners, who helped achieve a peaceful transition to democracy in their own country, have urged warring parties in the Middle East to lay down their arms. The Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet were awarded the Nobel peace prize for their role In helping build democracy in Tunisia. They are expected to collect their their award in Oslo later on Thursday.
“This dialogue almost failed on a number of occasions. But, also because of our patience, because of our ability to manage the dialogue, because of our persistence, because of the support we got, because of a mutual belief in the essence of the dialogue, the need for that dialogue, because of the support of civil society, because of the trust of the people in us, we managed to succeed with this dialogue.” Hooucine Abass, Secretary General, Tunisian General Labour Union
In honouring the National Dialogue Quartet, the Norwegian Nobel Committee said the quartet helped support the democratization process, when it was in danger of collapsing.
With a new constitution, free elections and a compromise politics between Islamist and secular leaders, Tunisia has been held up as a model of how to to transition to democracy. Despite their collective role in democratizing Tunisia, the country has currently been plunged into a state of emergency, as it battles the threat of jihadism.