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Nobel peace prize jury under investigation
Stockholm's County Administrative Board — the authority that supervises foundations and trusts in the city — has formally asked the Nobel Foundation to respond to allegations that the peace prize no longer reflects the will of Nobel, a Swedish industrialist who died in 1896.
The move comes after persistent complaints by Norwegian peace researcher Fredrik Heffermehl, who claims the original purpose of the prize was to diminish the role of military power in international relations.
"Nobel called it a prize for the champions of peace," Heffermehl told The Associated Press on Wednesday. "And it's indisputable that he had in mind the peace movement, the movement which is actively pursuing a new global order ... where nations safely can drop national armaments."
Since World War II, especially, the prize committee, which is appointed by the Norwegian Parliament, has widened the scope of the prize to include environmental, humanitarian and other efforts.
For example, in 2007 the prize went to climate campaigner Al Gore and the U.N.'s panel on climate change, and in 2009 the committee cited President Barack Obama for "extraordinary efforts" to boost international diplomacy.
"Do you see Obama as a promoter of abolishing the military as a tool of international affairs?" Heffermehl asked rhetorically.