Verden

Feels ashamed that Shimon Peres is a Nobel Laureate

In an interview with the Norwegian newspaper Dagsavisen former member of the Nobel Committee Mr Berge Furre says he feels ashamed that President Peres is a Nobel Laureate.

Yesterday Shimon Peres supported the bloodshed in Gaza. As President he is Israel’s head of state. Even though he was awarded with the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 for his work for peace in the Middle East, he opposes a seize-fire in Gaza.

Berge Furre served as a member of the Nobel Committee until Jan 1st this year. He is appalled that a Nobel Laureate is politically co-responsible for he atrocities in Gaza. Mr Berge holds a professoriate in history and served on the committee as representative for the Socialist Party.

Should feel his hand burning

– We in the Committee have to be silent in shame for what we have done, and hope that the prize still will remain a dignified prize, says professor Furre to Dagsavisen.

– Should he return the Peace Prize?

– He has been awarded with the Peace Prize and he has tainted it. It does not matter whether he returns it or not. But he should feel his hand burning every time he touches the Prize.

Berge Furre did not serve on the Committee when Shimon Peres, Yitzak Rabin and Yassir Arafat were awarded with the prize in 1994.

Yesterday Shimon Peres wholeheartedly defended Israel’s actions in Gaza when he spoke to a EU delegation.

– We are not concerned about PR or our reputation. We are fighting against terror and we have a right to defend our citizens, the Nobel Laureate said.

Cannot be recalled

Mr Ole Danbolt Mjøs retired as leader for the Nobel Committee on Dec 31st. He is careful in commenting President Peres statements. Mr Danboldt is a former Dean and representative for the Christian Democrats.

– If you want my comment, I think President Peres should use his efforts and his position to contribute to a quick and lasting peace in the Middle East

– Can the prize be recalled?

– According to the rules the prize cannot be recalled, and it has never happened before.

– But should he on his own initiative return it?

– I don’t have any comments to his thoughts regarding the matter.

Kaci Kullmann Five is still serving on the Nobel Committee on behalf of the Conservatives. She did not wish to comment Peres’ support to the invasion of Gaza.

– I don’t feel any need to comment the matter, she says.

– Why not?

– I am under no obligation to have an opinion on the matter.

This is not the first time Shimon Peres provokes members, and former members, of the Nobel Committee. In 2002 Peres served as Foreign Minister when the army was sent into the West Bank resulting in several hounded Palestinian deaths. Also then committee member Hanna Kvanmo wanted to recall the prize, and several other members were critical to President Peres.