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Praise and shock: EU Nobel Peace Prize reactions

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[October 12, 2012]  (AP) -- Some reaction to the European Union being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday:

"The stabilizing part played by the European Union has helped to transform a once-torn Europe from a continent of war to a continent of peace" -- Nobel committee chairman Thorbjoern Jagland.


"We must never forget that, at its origins, the European Union brought together nations emerging from the ruins of the devastating Second World War and united them in a project for peace ... The Nobel peace prize council, and in fact the international community, are now sending a very important message to Europe -- that the European Union is something very precious, that we should cherish it." -- European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso


"Nobel prize for the EU. At a time Brussels and all of Europe is collapsing in misery. What next? An Oscar for Van Rompuy?" -- Dutch euroskeptic lawmaker Geert Wilders, referring to Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council.


"The EU is an unique project that replaced war with peace, hate with solidarity. Overwhelming emotion for awarding of Nobel prize to EU." -- Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament, on Twitter.


"I think it's an absolute disgrace. I think it brings the Nobel Prize into total disrepute." -- Nigel Farage, head of Britain's euroskeptic U.K. Independence Party.


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"If they want to give the prize for preserving the peace in Europe, they should divide it between NATO and the EU. Until the end of the Cold War, it was NATO more than anyone else that kept the peace." -- former British Foreign Secretary Malcolm Rifkind.


"The European Union has played a vital role in healing the wounds of history and promoting peace, reconciliation and cooperation across Europe" -- NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen.


"For over 65 years on our continent is at peace. Former enemies are now close partners and friends. Today, Germany is surrounded only by friendly nations." -- Hermann Groehe, general secretary of German Chancellor Angela's Merkel's Christian Democratic Union party.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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