Mohamed ElBaradei and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) are Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize

This year's prize to the IAEA and ElBaradei links together the two principal major lines of thought that have governed selections for the award throughout its history.

Again and again, the Norwegian Nobel Committee has stressed the need for a better organized world. This explains the many prizes to representatives of the Inter-Parliamentary Union before World War I, to representatives of the League of Nations in the inter-war years, and to individuals and organizations attached to the United Nations after World War II. In 2001, year of the centenary of the Nobel Prizes, it was therefore only natural to give the award to the United Nations and to its Secretary General Kofi Annan. This year it is 60 years since the foundation of the United Nations. The IAEA is very much a part of the UN system and consequently belongs under this most distinct of all headings in the history of the Peace Prize.

On October 7, 2005, ElBaradei and the IAEA itself were announced as joint recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize for their "efforts to prevent nuclear energy from being used for military purposes and to ensure that nuclear energy, for peaceful purposes, is used in the safest possible way". ElBaradei donated all his winnings to building orphanages in his home city of Cairo. The IAEA's winnings are being spent on training scientists from developing countries to use nuclear techniques in combating cancer and malnutrition. ElBaradei is the fourth ethnic Egyptian to receive the Nobel Prize, following Ahmed Zewail (1999 in Chemistry), Anwar Sadat (1978 in Peace) and Naguib Mahfouz (1988 in Literature).

In his Nobel Speech, ElBaradei said that the changing landscape of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmanent may be defined by the emergence of an extensive black market in nuclear material and equipment, the proliferation of nuclear weapons and sensitive nuclear technology, and the stagnation in nuclear disarmament. To combat proliferation, ElBaradei has suggested keeping nuclear and radiological material out of the hands of extremist groups, tightening control over the operations for producing the nuclear material that could be used in weapons, and accelerating disarmanent efforts. Dr. ElBaradei also stated that only 1% of the money spent on developing new weapons would be enough to feed the entire world and that, if we hope to escape self-destruction, then nuclear weapons should have no place in our collective conscience, and no role in our security. Nobel Lecture.

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan said he was delighted that the 2005 Nobel Peace Prize had been awarded to the UN nuclear watchdog and its head ElBaradei. "The secretary-general congratulates him and the entire staff of the agency, past and present, on their contributions to global peace," a spokesman for Annan said.