The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons has won the Nobel Peace Prize. The Norwegian Nobel Committee honored the Geneva-based group "for its work to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and for its ground-breaking efforts to achieve a treaty-based prohibition of such weapons," the AP reports. The statement said that "through its inspiring and innovative support for the UN negotiations on a treaty banning nuclear weapons, ICAN has played a major part in bringing about what in our day and age is equivalent to an international peace congress."
Asked by journalists whether the prize was essentially symbolic, given that no international measures against nuclear weapons have been reached, committee chairwoman Berit Reiss-Andersen said that "what will not have an impact is being passive." The Norwegian Nobel Committee said 215 individuals and 103 organizations were nominated for this year's prize. Observers saw the Syrian volunteer humanitarian organization White Helmets as a top contender, along with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini for shepherding the deal to curb Iran's nuclear program. (Last year's winner worked to end a 52-year civil war.)