Mukwege and Murad won the award for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war, said committee chairwoman Berit Reiss-Andersen, speaking at a ceremony at the Norwegian Nobel Institute in Oslo.
Murad, a Yazidi-Kurdish human rights activist, was captured by ISIS militants in 2014 and has spoken out about the abuse she suffered at their hands. In November 2017 she published her story in The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State.
Dr Mukwege, a congolese doctor, has spent his life working with victims of sexual violence in The Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The pair were among 330 nominees to become 2018’s Nobel Peace Laureate, including 216 individuals and 115. It was the second-highest number of candidates ever, after the year 2016.
The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize for 2018 to Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict. #NobelPrize #NobelPeacePrize pic.twitter.com/LaICSbQXWM
— The Nobel Prize (@NobelPrize) October 5, 2018
The Peace Prize is given every year to the person who has done most to advance the cause of world peace. Last year’s winner was the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.
The oddsmakers favourites for this year’s prize had been South and North Korean leaders Moon Jae-in and Kim Jong-un, with the public betting that their negotiations over nuclear disarmament would impress the committee.
Earlier this week the Nobel prize for physics was awarded to Donna Strickland, only the third woman winner of the award and the first in 55 years. The Canadian was announced along with Arthur Ashkin, from the US, and Gerard Mourou, from France.
The Nobel prize for medicine was awarded to two scientists – Professor James P Allison from the US and Professor Tasuku Honjo from Japan – who discovered how to fight cancer using the body’s immune system.