Rock stars Bono and Bob Geldof are among 191 nominees for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize -- the second longest list in the prize’s 105-year history.
Nominations for the $1.3 million award -- considered by many to be one of the world’s top accolades -- trickled in from all corners of the globe, the director of the Norwegian Nobel Institute Geir Lundestad said on Friday.
“There are two trends I want to point out. The first is that this is again a very high number and that this year we have received more nominations from different parts of the world than usual,” he told Reuters.
He said 23 of the 191 nominees were organizations. In 2005 there were a record 199 nominations. As usual Lundestad declined to give any indication of who had or had not been nominated for the prize and instead referred to media leaks.
U2 frontman Bono and Live8 benefit organizer Geldof have campaigned for canceling Third World debt and once again make the list.
Web site reports say former mayor of New York Rudolph Giuliani and Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who helped organize a peace deal in Indonesia’s tsunami-ravaged Aceh province, have also been nominated for the peace prize.
And the Internet has been used by activists to drum up support for a number of celebrities, including U.S. talk show host Oprah Winfrey on the Web site oprah4peaceprize.org.
The peace prize is named after Alfred Nobel, the Swedish philanthropist and inventor of dynamite who died in 1896, one of the wealthiest men in Europe.
He left his money to the foundation established in his name to reward excellence each year. The peace prize is the only one of six Nobel prizes awarded outside Stockholm.
Previous Nobel Peace Prize winners include U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt in 1906 for brokering a 1905 peace treaty between Russia and Japan and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1964 for his civil rights campaign.