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A Special Prize of the Carter-Menil Human Rights Foundation
18 May 1994




Table of Contents

DEDICATION

of the Tony Smith sculpture

MARRIAGE
4 p.m.
Kontraskjæret

The Honorable Andrew Young
Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations

 

 

The Honorable Bjørn Tore Godal
Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs

 

 

The Honorable Jimmy Carter
39th President of the United States
Chairman of The Carter-Menil Human Rights Foundation

 

 
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UNVEILING

Dr. Marianne Heiberg
Research Fellow, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI)

 

Mrs. Dominique de Menil
President of The Carter-Menil Human Rights Foundation
and The Rothko Chapel

 

The Honorable Ann-Marit Sæbønes
Mayor of Oslo

 

 
Facing the fjord, "Marriage," the Tony Smith sculpture, is a magnificentsymbol of what Norway stands for. It is a door to the world and at the sametime a peaceful arch.

Smith's sculptures often have been compared to ancient monuments, which taketheir significance in relation to their site. The power of an abstract form canproduce an experience so strong that it is unforgettable.

Tony Smith (1912-1980) was one of the outstanding American artists of thegeneration of Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock, and Barnett Newman. He was ateacher, critic, mentor, architect, painter, sculptor, and poet.

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PRESENTATION


of a Special Prize to the
INSTITUTE OF APPLIED SOCIAL SCIENCE (FAFO)
5 p.m.
Gamle Logen

The Honorable Bjørn Tore Godal
Norwegian Minister of foreign Affairs

 

 

The Honorable Andrew Young
Master of Ceremonies
former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations

 

 

Mrs. Dominique de Menil
President of The Carter-Menil Human Rights Foundation
and The Rothko Chapel

 

 

The Honorable Jimmy Carter
39th President of The United States
Chairman of The Carter-Menil Human Rights Foundation

 

 

The Honorable Jan Egeland
State Secretary in the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

 

 

The Honorable Uri Savir
Director-General of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs

 

 

The Honorable Ahmed Qouriah Suleiman (Abu Ala)
Director-General of the Economic Department
of The Palestine Liberation Organization

 

 

Presentation of
The Carter-Menil Award to FAFO by
Mrs. Dominique de Menil and The Honorable Jimmy Carter

 

 

Acceptance by
The Honorable Terje Rød Larsen
Special Advisor for the Middle East
Royal Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

 

 

The Honorable Andrew Young

 

 
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THE OSLO CHANNEL

 

On September 13, 1993, Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)signed a declaration of principles that intends to enable Palestinians andIsraelis to live a common economic goal. That turning point, symbolized by thefamous handshake between Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO ChairmanYassir Arafat, culminated 18 months of unconventional secret talks staged inOslo hotels and country homes. Five Norwegians created an atmosphere ofinformality in which negotiators could come to know and trust each other. Thissecret "back door to peace" proved a successful alternative to the stalemate ofofficial negotiations and an inspirational model of what is possible whenindividuals act for peace.

 

The two sides were brought together in 1992 through connections developed byresearchers for the Institute of Applied Social Science (FAFO) studying livingconditions in the Occupied Territories. FAFO Director-General Terje RødLarsen offered to facilitate secret contacts between Israeli and PLOrepresentatives. His offer was soon accepted, bolstered by the Norwegians'reputation for evenhandedness and their historical involvement in the MiddleEast. At the start, the talks were exploratory, with academics Yair Hirschfeldof Tel Aviv University and Ron Pundak of Haifa University meeting with Abu Ala,the PLO's Director-General of the Economic Department.

 

By April 1993, the negotiating team changed when Israel authorized officialtalks facilitated by Norway. Discussions intensified and became more focusedand more up-front, yet still remaining secret. Because Israeli law forbadecommunication with the PLO, Norwegians served as go-betweens, representing thetwo sides to each other, often conveying responses by telephone.

 

The Norwegians explored ways to build trust and common ground between thenegotiators and cultivated basic human connections. The Norway team consistedof Larsen and his wife, Mona Juul, a department chief at the Norwegian foreignministry; Jan Egeland, state secretary in the Royal Norwegian Ministry ofForeign Affairs; and Norwegian Foreign Minister Johan Jørgen Holst andhis wife, Marianne Heiberg, a FAFO researcher who conducted the study of theWest Bank and Gaza Strip.

 

Holst's country home in Smestad was the site for some of the talks, withothers at the Borregaard estate mansion east of Oslo and the Oslo Plaza Hotel.The Oslo Channel was marked by warmth, conviviality, and spontaneity. Thenegotiators ate together, lived together, and even played together on theliving room floor with Holst's 4-year-old son, Edvard. Said Holst, "We tried todeal with one of the most complicated conflicts in modem human history bycreating a human framework within which to deal with the issues."

 

This environment also helped the facilitators change the negotiators'perspectives on dealing with long-standing points of disagreement. A shift fromdwelling on the past to looking toward the future resulted in a declaration ofprinciples for the gradual assumption of Palestinian self-rule in the OccupiedTerritories.

 

After the signing in Washington, D.C., Norwegians continued working with thetwo sides to finalize the agreement, which now grants limited Palestinianautonomy in Gaza and the West Bank town of Jericho, marking a watershed in thehistory of Israel's 27 year military occupation of land where nearly 1 millionArabs live.

 

 

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A HISTORY OF LEADERSHIP

 

This is not the first time Norway was a broker for peace. Norwegians haveforged a history of global leadership. A Norwegian, Trygve Lie, served as thefirst secretary-general of the United Nations from 1946-1953, and since then,Norway has filled many senior U.N. positions. Mote than 40,000 Norwegians haveparticipated in U.N. peacekeeping operations in the Middle East, Asia, Africa,Central America, and the former Yugoslavia. In spring 1993, ThorvaldStoltenberg resigned as foreign minister to become the U.N. peacebroker for theformer Yugoslavia, and, in December 1992, Norwegian foreign ministry advisorand former U.N. Ambassador Tom Vraalsen was a special U.N. envoy to SouthAfrica. Today, with a population of only 4.2 million, Norway makes pet capitacontributions to the United Nations higher than those of any other country andleads the world in development aid as a percentage of gross national product at1.14 percent.

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THE CARTER MENIL
HUMAN RIGHTS FOUNDATION

 

The Carter-Menil Human Rights Foundation was established in 1986 by JimmyCarter and Dominique de Menil to promote the protection of human rightsthroughout the world. The Foundation periodically gives a $100,000 prize to oneor more organizations or individuals for their outstanding commitment, at therisk of their lives, to opposing human rights violations. This year, theFoundation chose to make a one-time Special Award to the people of Norway fortheir leadership and commitment to achieving peace in the Middle East andaround the world: the presentation of the Tony Smith sculpture "Marriage" toNorway and a monetary prize to the Institute of Applied Social Science (FAFO)for its great contribution to the September 1993 "Declaration of Principles"between the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Israel.

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PREVIOUS HONOREES

 

1986:
Yuri Orlov, Soviet Union.
Grupo de Apoyo Mutuo, Guatemala.
Presented at The Rothko Chapel, Houston, Texas.
Keynote speaker: Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Cape Town.

Yuri Orlov, Soviet physicist and dissident, founded the Moscow HelsinkiCommittee in May 1976. His outspoken criticism of the Communist Party and hishuman rights activism led to his expulsion from the party in 1956 and hisarrest in 1977. After seven years in a strict regimen labor camp, he moved tothe United States and continues to speak out for human rights.

 

Grupo de Apoyo Mutuo (GAM) was created in June 1984 by relatives of thedisappeared in Guatemala to determine the fate of missing family members bymaking inquiries of the government, filing habeas corpus petitions, anddenouncing disappearances in local and international forums. By denouncingexecutions, kidnappings, and torture, they have placed themselves at the samerisks.

 

 

1987:
La Vicaría de la Solidaridad, Chile.
Presented at The Carter Center, Atlanta, Georgia.
Keynote speaker: former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.

Cardinal Raul Silva Henriquez founded in 1987 La Vicaríade la Solidaridad to provide legal assistance to the families of victims ofhuman rights abuses. La Vicaría also collects and disseminatesinformation about specific human rights violations, sponsors nonpolitical civicprograms for human rights education, and provides food and monetary assistanceto those in need.

 

 

1988:
The Sisulu Family, South Africa.
Presented at The Carter Center, Atlanta, Georgia.
Keynote speaker: Andrew Young, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations.

Walter and Albertina Sisulu and their seven children came to symbolizethe fight against apartheid and the suffering it imposed on South Africa.Walter, as secretary-general of the African National Congress (ANC), andAlbertina, as a leading member of the South African women's movement, havestruggled constantly for the recognition of human rights for all South Africans. All members of the Sisulu family were imprisoned, exiled, orotherwise harrassed for more than two decades for their work for justice inSouth Africa.

 

 

1989:
AI Haq (Law in the Service of Man), West Bank.
B'Tselem/'The lsraeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, Israel.
Presented at The Carter Center, Atlanta, Georgia.
Keynote speaker: former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.

Al-Haq, the West Bank affiliate of the International Commission ofJurists, is a Palestinian human rights organization based in Ramallah. It wasfounded in 1979 to promote respect for internationally recognized standards ofhuman tights, humanitarian law, and justice in the Occupied Territories.

 

B'Tselem was founded in February 1989 by a group of Israeli lawyers,intellectuals, physicians, journalists, and Knesset members to collect anddisseminate data on human rights violations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.The organization also educates the Israeli public about international humanrights standards and the impact of human rights violations on Israeli societyand democracy.

 

 

1990:
The Consejo de Comunidades Etnicas Runujel Junam, Guatemala.
The Civil Rights Movement (CRM) of Sri Lanka.
Presented at New York University, New York City.
Keynote speaker, University President John Brademas.

The Consejo de Comunidades Etnicas Runujel Junam was formed by a groupof Mayan Indian peasants with the assistance of schoolteacher Amilcar MendezUrizar in July 1988 to monitor and defend human rights and fundamentalfreedoms. The group's objectives include disbanding the massive civilian patrolsystem, educating the rural populace about human rights, and seeking legalredress for victims of abuse.

 

The Civil Rights Movement (CRM) of Sri Lanka was founded in 1971to address human rights violations that occurred in the aftermath of a militantinsurgency, including prolonged detention, deaths in custody, unfair trialprocedures, suspension of trade union rights, and censorship. The group builtupon this work, examining existing and proposed laws against internationalhuman rights standards.

 

 

1991:
The University of Central America in San Salvador in honor of sixJesuit
priests who were murdered.
Presented at The Rothko Chapel, Houston, Texas.
Keynote speaker: Nelson Mandela.

Father Ignacio Ellacuria, S.J., Father Ignacio Martin Baró, S.J.,Father Segundo Montes Mozo, S.J., Father Juan Ramón Moreno Pardo, S.J.,Father Amando López Quintana, S.J., Father Joaquin López yLópez, S.J.

 

Six Jesuit priests were slain on November 16, 1989, in El Salvador bythe Salvadoran military. Their assassinations were in retaliation for theiroutspoken commitment to human rights and social change in El Salvador. Theaward was given to the University of Central America in San Salvador in honorof their sacrifices.

 

1992:
The Haitian Refugee Center, Miami, Florida.
The Native American Rights Fund, Boulder, Colorado.
Presented at the Russell Senate Office Building,Washington, D.C.
Keynote speaker: former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.

The Haitian Refugee Center was created in 1980 to protect the civil andconstitutional rights of Haitians who continue to seek refuge in the UnitedStates after fleeing repressive government policies and human rights abuses inHaiti. The Center has used class actions and precedent-setting litigation toensure protection of the basic rights of Haitian refugees, often on behalf ofrefugees unable to obtain representation in immigration matters.

 

The Native American Rights Fund was founded in 1970 by a group of NativeAmericans and other persons who recognized the need for a national advocacygroup that specialized in Indian law and provided legal representation toIndian people. The Fund focuses on the preservation of tribal existence,protection of tribal natural resources, promotion of human rights, governmentaccountability to Native Americans, and the development of Indian law.

 

 

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THE CARTER CENTER

The Carter Center in Atlanta, Georgia, is a nonprofit, nongovernmentalorganization dedicated to improving the quality of life for people around theworld. Its programs touch the lives of people in 70 countries, primarily in thedeveloping world, addressing needs related to global health, democracy anddevelopment, and urban revitalization. The Center brings parties in conflict tothe negotiating table, monitors multiparty elections in emerging democracies,works to alleviate human rights abuses, fights debilitating disease, andteaches farmers to increase crop production. At home, the Center is leading acitywide effort in Atlanta to address problems associated with urban povertyand decay.

 

 

 


THE ROTHKO CHAPEL

Consecrated to God, named or unnamed, The Rothko Chapel was dedicated onFebruary 27, 1971. It is a modem meditative environment created by thepaintings of the late great American artist, Mark Rothko. It is an intimatesanctuary available to people of every belief, where the experience andunderstanding of all traditions are encouraged and made available.

In 1981, The Rothko Chapel initiated human rights awards for "Commitment toTruth and Freedom." In 1986, a second award was established to honor andemulate the spirit of Oscar Arnulfo Romero, Archbishop of El Salvador, murderedon March 24, 1980. These Rothko Chapel Awards recognize individuals andorganizations, who, at great risk, denounce violations of human tights. Moreand more, the Chapel has become a rallying place for all concerned with peace,freedom, and social justice throughout the world.

 


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