UNDP salutes Nobel Laureates , , Tawakkul Karman

New York, 7 October 2011—The Development Programme (UNDP) today paid tribute to the recipients of the 2011 Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Leymah Gbowee of , and Tawakkul Karman of .

The three were honoured today for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in work.

“We salute the 2011 Nobel Laureates Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman,” said , UNDP Administrator. “They show us what can be achieved when women participate and take on decision making roles, and they serve as an example for us all.”

Announcing the prize, the Norwegian stated that: “We cannot achieve democracy and lasting peace in the world unless women obtain the same opportunities as men to influence developments at all levels of society.”

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is Africa’s first democratically elected female president, and a former chief of the UNDP Africa Bureau (1992-1997). Leyman Gbowee is an activist who has mobilized women to boost the peace process in Liberia, while Tawakkul Karman has been at the forefront of the campaign for women’s rights and democracy in Yemen.

This brings to 15 the number of women who have received the Nobel Peace Prize since it was first conferred in 1901.

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