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  • A divided Colombia reacts to the results of the referendum.

    A divided Colombia reacts to the results of the referendum. | Photo: Reuters

Published 3 October 2016
Opinion

“It's now out of the question" to give a prize to Colombia, said Asle Sveen, a historian who tracks the prize.

Tthe Nobel Peace Prize awards committee said Monday that it had removed Colombia from the list of candidates for this year's award following voters' unexpected rejection of the negotiated peace accord.

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"Colombia's off any credible list," Kristian Berg Harpviken, head of the Peace Research Institute, in Oslo, Norway told reporters. The 2016 Nobel Peace Prize announcement will be made Friday.

President Juan Manuel Santos and FARC's top commander Rodrigo Londono, better known by his nom de guerre Timochenko, had been widely tipped for the US$936,000 award before the referendum.

The prize has often gone to parties negotiating peace processes, as was the case in Northern Ireland in 1998, Palestine in 1994 and Vietnam in 1973, but in none of those examples did a treaty or agreement defy the popular will of the people.

"It's now out of the question" to give a prize for Colombia, said Asle Sveen, a historian who tracks the prize. He had previously tipped the Colombian agreement to win.

RELATED:
Despite Colombia's 'No' Win, FARC and Santos Committed to Peace

Sveen said he now believes the odds-on-favorite is Iran and world powers who negotiated an end to sanctions in exchange for Tehran's downsized nuclear ambitions.

Possible candidates include U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif and the European Union foreign policy chief Frederica Mogherini, he said.

Norwegian Foreign Minister Boerge Brende, whose country helped broker the Colombian agreement, expressed disappointment at the vote. "We have to try to rescue the peace agreement," he told independent TV2.

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