European Union leaders in Norway to receive Nobel Peace Prize


A photo taken on September 4, 2012 in Lille, northern France shows flags of European countries displayed in front of a flag of the European Union. The crisis-torn European Union (EU) won this year's Nobel Peace Prize, it was announced October 12, 2012.



European Union leaders have arrived in Norway to pick up this year's Nobel Peace Prize.

The Nobel committee granted the European Union the award for fostering peace on the continent despite its current financial crisis.

The Associated Press reported EU leaders are hailing the 27-nation bloc for its achievements but acknowledged the need for more integration and centralized authority.

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said Sunday that absence, which some say contributed to the 1992-95 Bosnia war, is "one of the most powerful arguments for a stronger European Union."

Barroso, EU Council President Herman Van Rompuy and EU Parliament president Martin Schulz spoke to reporters in Oslo, AP wrote.

Agence France Presse noted the EU collects the Nobel Peace Prize, in Norway, a country that has ironically refused the join the 27-nation European bloc.

Norway, is an oil-rich, wealthy country that is currently prospering in contrast to EU nations which face difficult austerity measures, high unemployment and violent protests, AFP reported.

EU leaders German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, will attend Monday's awards ceremony, the AP wrote.