By Asma Smadhi | Apr 14 2014UGTT
The Norwegian Nobel Committee has accepted the nomination of the UGTT labor union for its peace award, according to the union.
The union was nominated by the presidents of four major Tunisian universities a few days after the adoption of the Tunisian constitution on January 2014, according to Huffington Post Maghreb.
The UGTT was one of four civil society organizations brokering political negotiations that helped end a months-long political deadlock after the assassination of assembly member Mohamed Brahmi in July 2013. It’s head, Houcine Abassi, personally met with Tunisia’s political leaders dozens of times over the course of talks.
These efforts eventually contributed to the ratification of Tunisia’s post-revolution constitution and the formation of a caretaker government tasked with seeing the country through to future elections.
The UGTT said its nomination was due to “the leading role” it played in “the defense of the values of freedom, democracy, and peace” and its “effective contribution throughout its history in defending [Tunisia]”.
The union, founded in 1946, played a key role in Tunisia’s struggle against French colonialism.
This year’s list of nominees for a Nobel Peace prize includes 278 candidates, the highest number of nominees ever. 47 of these are organizations, according to the Nobel committee’s website.
Blogger and activist Lina Ben Mhenni was the last Tunisian to be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 2011.