Statement on Occasion of Receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize 2005

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Vienna, Austria

by IAEA Director General Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei

What do I feel at this occasion? Gratitude, pride, and hope.

Gratitude: With this recognition, the Norwegian Nobel Committee underscores the value and the relevance of the work we have been doing. It recognizes the urgency of addressing the dangers we face: nuclear proliferation, nuclear armaments, and nuclear terrorism. The award will lend prominence and impetus to the IAEA´s ultimate objective - of passing to our children a world free of nuclear weapons - and for that I am deeply grateful.

Pride: It is at once humbling to receive such an extraordinary honour, and an occasion for me to take great pride in all the men and women who serve at the International Atomic Energy Agency. This is an acknowledgement of their untiring efforts in the service of peace - efforts that the Prize Committee has characterized as being "of incalculable importance".

  • The IAEA was founded with a simple credo: "Atoms for Peace" - meaning that nuclear science should be used safely and securely in the service of humankind - in peaceful applications related to energy production, health, water, agriculture and other aspects of development -— and not for its destruction. More than anything, this award suggests that, almost five decades later, we are still focused unwaveringly on living up to that objective.

Hope: It has long been my belief that the road to international peace and security lies through multilateralism - the collective search by people of all racial, religious, ethnic and national backgrounds to find a common ground, based not on intimidation or rivalry but on understanding and human solidarity.

  • In a practical sense, this means developing a functional system of international security that does not derive from a nuclear weapons deterrent - but rather based on addressing the security concerns of all.
  • Ultimately, the news I have just received - that we are being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize - gives me renewed hope that, working in concert, the international community can achieve this goal. It strengthens my resolve to fulfil both aspects of the Agency´s mandate: ensuring that the benefits of nuclear energy are distributed as broadly as possible in the service of humankind, and working towards a world free of nuclear weapons.
Last update: 21 October 2014