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Norwegian Bishop Gunnar Stalsett To Receive 30th Niwano Peace Prize

TOKYO, Feb. 27, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Niwano Peace Foundation will award the 30th Niwano Peace Prize to The Right Reverend Dr. Gunnar Stalsett, Bishop Emeritus of Oslo in the Church of Norway, in recognition of his extraordinary and persistent work for peace.

An award presentation ceremony will take place in Tokyo on May 16. In addition to an award certificate, Bishop Stalsett will receive a medal and 20 million yen.

His life and career truly exemplify what is needed and what can be done to bring about lasting and just peace, and what religious ideas and inter-religious institutions can contribute. Bishop Stalsett witnessed both poverty and ethnic discrimination in his childhood. His early career combined theological studies, pastoral work, political action and work on health. As Secretary General of the Lutheran World Federation and Bishop of Oslo, he gained experience and respect in a variety of worlds and disciplines.

In selecting Bishop Stalsett as an awardee for 2013, the Peace Prize Committee said he is "a tireless worker for peace" involved in a host of conflict situations around the globe over many years. The committee also commended "his solid and incessant commitment to peace in concrete mediation activities in various parts of the world." Bishop Stalsett "has proved himself a determined, highly effective and creative peace builder," achieving "important, durable results that have affected millions of people," it added.

Niwano Peace Prize:

The Niwano Peace Prize was established in 1983 to honor and encourage individuals and organizations that have contributed significantly to inter-religious understanding and cooperation, thereby furthering the cause of world peace. To avoid undue emphasis on any particular religion or region, nominations are solicited from some 600 people and organizations, representing 125 countries. The prize is named in honor of the founder and first president of the lay Buddhist organization Rissho Kosei-kai, Nikkyo Niwano.

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