Barack Obama must give high priority to the Middle East conflict during the first year in office as the United States President, said Martti Ahtisaari after received this year’s Nobel Peace Prize at Oslo, Norway on December 10. The former Finnish president urged the international community to seriously commit itself for a result to the crisis in that region.
“Solution can be found to the crises stretching from Israel and Palestine to Iraq and Iran. If we want to achieve lasting results, we must look at the whole region. The credibility of the whole international community is at stake. We cannot go on, year after year, simply pretending to do something to help the situation in the Middle East. We must also get results,” he added.
He also rubbished claims that there is no possible solution to the crisis. “The tensions and wars in the region have been going on for so long that many have come to believe that the Middle East knot can never be untied. I do not share this belief. All crises, including the one in the Middle East, can be resolved. The solution would require a contribution from all the parties involved as well as the international community as a whole,” said Ahtisaari.
The man, credited to have resolved crisis in places like Kosovo and Indonesia, believes growing inequality within countries and between regions deepens the existing conflicts. Drawing a direct relationship between development and conflict, he said, “It is our task to create a future and hope for regions and countries in crisis where young people suffer from unemployment and have little prospects of improving their lives. Unless we can meet this challenge, new conflicts will flare up and we will lose another generation to war.”
He called for more humanitarian assistance and investment in poorer countries. According to him, hundreds of millions of young people will be out of work in countries that are in early stages of development. If nothing is done, such places will become breeding ground for crime, instability and war as young people lose all hope.
– Kunal Majumderby