By Don Melvin, CNN
Updated 5:39 AM ET, Fri October 9, 2015 | Video Source: CNN
(CNN) The Nobel Peace Prize Committee confounded all expectations Friday — bypassing global figures such as Pope Francis and German Chancellor Angela Merkel — and handed the award to the National Dialogue Quartet for its “decisive contribution to the building of a pluralistic democracy in Tunisia in the wake of the Jasmine Revolution of 2011.”
The Quartet is a group dedicated to creating dialogue between disparate elements of Tunisian society.
“The Quartet was formed in the summer of 2013 when the democratization process was in danger of collapsing as a result of political assassinations and widespread social unrest,” the Nobel committee said in a statement. “It established an alternative, peaceful political process at a time when the country was on the brink of civil war. It was thus instrumental in enabling Tunisia, in the space of a few years, to establish a constitutional system of government guaranteeing fundamental rights for the entire population, irrespective of gender, political conviction or religious belief.”