Nobel prize for women at the top

So another tribute to women: the first Nobel peace prize for any woman in seven years goes to three women. It seems the Nobel committee in Oslo has done a broad sweep of female achievement since it gave the prize to another African woman in 2004.

This year’s winners include Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, a feisty former World Bank economist who trades on her motherly qualities, turned Liberia round since becoming Africa’s first and only elected female leader. Her compatriot, Leymah Gbowee, organised the peace movement which ended the second Liberian civil war in 2003.

The third recipient is Tawakkul Karman, scion of a prominent Islamist opposition family in Yemen, who has played a leading role in the Yemeni protest movement that forms the more volatile wing of the Arab spring.

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