Washington: United States has congratulated the European Union on receiving this year's Nobel peace Prize. Greeting the achievement, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, said it's quite remarkable to see how unified and peaceful Europe is in the 21st century.

"And that did not happen by coincidence; it happened because of the very hard work and dedication of leaders and citizens across Europe. So for us, it's a great validation as well," Clinton told reporters on Friday.

Later in the day White House too issued a statement congratulating the European Union on being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. "This award recognizes Europe's commitment to the principles of democracy, freedom, and human rights, as well as its efforts to advance these values across the world," the National Security Council spokesman, Tommy Vietor, said.

"In addition, it reflects the spirit and dedication of the Europeans to coexist peacefully in a society that draws strength from the diversity of its people, its languages and its cultures. We have no stronger partner than Europe and are pleased to see it recognized for its achievements," Vietor added.

The Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), José Miguel Insulza, also congratulated the European Union for being honored with the Nobel Peace Prize "for its efforts to unite the states of Europe, putting aside differences and forging a continent of peace and prosperity."

In a letter to the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso and the President of the European Council, Herman van Rompuy, the OAS Secretary General said, "this recognition is the victory of democracy and human rights in the world; it is a Prize not just for a project representing the common interest, but a memorable day for all of us who work for and value freedom, equality and respect for human dignity."

The European Union has been a Permanent Observer to the OAS since November 18, 1989. Europe has made remarkable achievements in the last 60 years, the White House Press Secretary, Jay Carney, told reporters.

"In the last 60 some odd years since the end of World War II, it is a remarkable accomplishment. You're talking about a region of the world that was engulfed in war twice in the first half of the 20th century, and that through the project of the European Union has demonstrated that resolving differences through politics and through policy is a far better path than through war," he said.

The European Union Ambassador to the United States João Vale de Almeida said, the Nobel Peace Prize recognizes the great achievements the EU has made in regional integration for peace.

"What started with six countries forming a Coal and Steel Community following World War II to help secure peace and stability has grown into a Union of 27 soon to be 28 countries working together," Almeida said.

(Agencies)


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