Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borissov is visiting Norway on December 10 and 11 2012 and would attend the ceremony at which the Nobel Peace Prize was conferred on the European Union, the government media office in Sofia said.
Borissov was attending at the invitation of European Council President Herman van Rompuy, the government media office said.
The award will be accepted by Van Rompuy, European Commission President Jose Barroso and European Parliament President Martin Schulz, accompanied by Ana Vicente (12), from Spain, Elena Garbujo (16), from Italy, Ilona Zielkowska (21), from Poland and Larkin Zahra (23), from Malta – the winners of an online drawing and writing contest on what peace in Europe means to young people, the European Commission said in a statement ahead of the ceremony.
The Nobel prize committee said the award to the EU was for six decades of work in advancing the causes of peace, reconciliation, democracy and human rights.
Barroso said that the Nobel award was “a sign we should cherish the EU for the good of Europeans and for the good of the world.
“The award by the Nobel Committee shows that in these difficult times the European Union remains a force of inspiration for countries and people all over the world and that our global community needs a strong European Union,” he said.
The EU is dedicating the Nobel prize money to humanitarian projects for children who are victims of war and conflicts (matching it, to make a joint sum of two million euro).
Responding to criticisms about the EU receiving the award while, among other things, it is in the midst of an economic crisis, Van Rompuy said: “Europe is going through a difficult period. We are working hard, jointly as a Union, and in all individual member states, to overcome these problems. And I’m sure we will succeed. We want Europe to again become a symbol of hope”.
(Photo: Sébastien Bertrand)