The European Union has announced it will donate its Nobel Peace Prize money to projects that help child refugees. The award will benefit some 23,000 children across three continents.
Officials in Brussels said the 930,000 euro ($1.2-million) prize money would be increased to 2 million euros, for projects in Africa, Asia and South America.
EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the money would be used to help heal the "scars of war," providing access to basic education and child-friendly spaces.
"Our hope is to contribute to heal these scars. It is to give back to these children their natural right to happiness and give them a chance to have access to education."
"Each and every girl and boy in the world should have the opportunity to develop her and his talents."
The money has been earmarked for projects that support 4,000 Syrian refugee children in northern Iraq; 5,000 displaced children in Colombia; 11,000 Congolese displaced children, refugees in Ethiopia; and a project benefiting 3,000 children in Pakistan.
The funds were to be allocated to the UN agencies and UNHCR, along with the French NGO Agency for Technical Cooperation, the Norwegian Refugee Council and the UK-based Save the Children.
The EU as a whole was awarded the prize officially at a ceremony in the Norwegian City of Oslo on December 10. It was chosen as the winner for its contribution to preserving the peace of Europe over the past six decades.
rc/sej (dpa, EPD, AFP)