José Manuel Barroso, Herman Van Rompuy, and Martin Schulz received Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the EU in the Oslo City Hall. During he ceremony, Jagland said the Norwegian Nobel Committee wanted to remind what the European Union means for the peace of Europe in the midst of a difficult time for Europe.
Among the approximately 1,000 guests, there were 21 leaders from the 27 EU member states, including the German prime minister Angela Merkel and French President François Hollande.
The leaders of the two old foes sat next to each other during the ceremony. This scene was noted by Jagland.
– Reconciliation between Germany and France is probably the most dramatic example. We know from history that war and conflict can be turned into peace and cooperation, said Jagland.
The applause broke out in the courtroom, and Merkel and Hollande responded by getting up and greeting the guests.
Protests are Understandable
Jagland also noted that unemployment, severe budget cuts, furious protesters and considerable internal disagreement have characterized EU recently. Nobel commie chairman attributed this serious social unrest in Europe to misguided policies, corruption and tax evasion.
– It is understandable this leads to protests. Demonstrations are part of democracy, said Jagland.
Jagland believes that it is more important than ever to stand together precisely in the time of the financial crisis that has hit innocent people.