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Costa Rica seeks Nobel Peace Prize for abolishing its army

December 4, 2014

On Monday, the Legislative Assembly passed a motion to nominate Costa Rica and Japan for a Nobel Peace Prize for their decision to abolish their armies as permanent institutions, according to a lawmaker.

The bill was proposed by lawmaker Ottón Solís, co-founder of the governing Citizen Action Party, and accepted by the legislature.

“Awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to the people of Costa Rica and Japan would serve, first, to encourage these people to never eliminate the articles from their constitutions, and second, to encourage other countries, poor or rich, tropical or temperate, to abolish their armed forces,” Solís said.

To support the bill, a “pro-Nobel Peace Prize” commission will be convened with three lawmakers tasked with writing the appeals that will be presented in February to the Norwegian Nobel Committee.

“The motion’s approval should be a sign to the world about the force and endurance of the values of peace and the unequivocal promise to peacefully resolve Costa Rica’s conflicts despite some external threats,” read the approved motion.

Last Monday, Costa Rica celebrated its 66th anniversary of the abolition of its army after a brief civil war triggered by election fraud in 1948.

The decision taken by the victorious leader, three-time President José Figueres Ferrer, was the start of an accelerated economic and social modernization that raised Costa Rica’s indicators in health and education to some of the best in Latin America. Since ending the army, there has not been an interruption in the constitutional order.

Japan agreed to renounce its armed forces as of 1945, following the end of World War II.

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