On September 9, US President Donald Trump was nominated for the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize 2021 award. He was nominated by Christian Tybring-Gjedde, a Norwegian member of parliament from the right-wing Progress Party, and head of the Norwegian delegation to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation's Parliamentary Assembly.
"It is for his contribution for peace between Israel and the UAE. It is a unique deal", Tybring-Giedde told Reuters. Earlier this year, the US played a pivotal role in brokering the establishment of normal relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates - and more recently with the Kingdom of Bahrain. It was historic, as the UAE (and Bahrain) officially ended its boycott of Israel that spanned decades.
Incidentally, this is the second time that Tybring-Giedde has nominated Trump. The first time he did so was in 2019, citing Trump's role in trying to establish peace with North Korea after he met with Kim Jong Un three times.
The prize is awarded in October every year.
The nomination has come as a huge boost to Donald Trump who is currently campaigning to be re-elected as US President. But since a nomination is not equal to a win, let's take a look at who is eligible and the process.
Let's start by talking about the prize
The prize is awarded to those who work towards bringing warring parties to peace, or improving the human condition. In his will, Alfred Nobel wrote that the award be dedicated to:
"the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses"
Since 1901, 100 peace awards have been awarded to 137 beneficiaries: 107 individuals and 27 organisations (the International Red Cross has won it thrice, and the United Nations High Commissioner For Refugees twice).
A list of laureates include Barack Obama, the United Nations, the Dalai Lama, Indian social activist Kailash Satyarthi and the European Union. The most recent prize in 2019 was awarded to Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali of Ethiopia, for his work on ending a border conflict with Eritrea.
Notable persons not awarded the prize include Mahatma Gandhi. Technicalities did not allow a posthumous prize to be bestowed, and therefore no prize was awarded in 1948 due to no "suitable living candidate".
How does the process work?
Here's the timeline of the process:
- Starting September through February, nominators can submit applications to the Norwegian Nobel Committee for the prize to be given the following year.
- Till March, a shortlisting process takes place, consisting of 20 to 30 names
- From March till August, advisor reviews and consulting takes place on the nomination, involving permanent advisors and at times foreign experts
- In October, the Nobel laureates are chosen. The Nobel Committee chooses the prize winner through a majority vote. The vote is final and without appeal.
In this case, Tybring-Giedde is the nominator, who has nominated Trump, and has decided to make his choice publicly known.
Who can nominate?
The following persons are eligible to nominate one to receive the Nobel Peace Prize
Tybring-Giedde is eligible to nominate Trump for the Nobel Peace Prize through his capacity as a member of a parliament. To nominate, one can head over to this website.
Publicly available records show that from India, Mahatma Gandhi and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru have been previously nominated for the prize. Adolf Hitler was also nomintaed in 1939 by a Swedish parliamentary as a satirical commentary on political discourse in his country; but the nomination was later withdrawn.
Further, there are 318 nominations in the run for this year's award: 211 individuals and 107 organisations. It's the fourth highest number of nominations ever.
Is there any criteria for consideration?
Not really. To be considered, you only need to be nominated by one of the eligible persons from the list above. A self-nomination is not eligible.
Is Trump's nomination serious?
It is hard to say, as a high level of confidentiality is maintained during deliberations.
In fact, it is not known who nominated whom, or who was nominated at all for the Nobel for a period of 50 years.
"The statutes of the Nobel Foundation restrict disclosure of information about the nominations, whether publicly or privately, for 50 years. The restriction concerns the nominees and nominators, as well as investigations and opinions related to the award of a prize", the Committees website says.
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