The UNESCO on 19 April 2017 awarded the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize to Giuseppina Nicolini, the mayor of the Italian island of Lampedusa and to the nongovernmental organization SOS Méditerranée (France).
Nicolini has been bestowed for the award for her commitment to saving the lives of migrants and refugees.
Joaquim Chissano, the acting President of the Jury of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize declared, “After examining conditions around the world, the Jury of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize determined that refugees and migrants constitute one of the crucial issues of our day, notably in the Mediterranean where nearly 13,000 men, women and children have perished in shipwrecks since 2013.”
Since becoming mayor in 2012, Nicolini has been recognized for her boundless humanity and unwavering commitment to refugee crisis management and integration in response to the arrival of thousands of refugees on the shores of Lampedusa and elsewhere in Italy.
SOS Méditerranée is a European organization working for the rescue of people in distress in the Mediterranean.
About Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize
• The Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize was established in 1989 by a resolution supported by 120 countries. The resolution was adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO at its 25th session.
• The Prize is intended to honour living individuals and active public or private bodies or institutions that have made a significant contribution to promoting, seeking, safeguarding or maintaining peace, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and the Constitution of UNESCO.
• Past laureates of the Prize included French President François Hollande, Nelson Mandela, Jimmy Carter and others.
What: Won UNESCO Peace Prize
When: 19 April 2017