EU to use Nobel money for child refugees

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iol news pic EU headquarters AP FILE - EU flags fly at the European Commission headquarters in Brussels. (AP Photo/Yves Logghe, File)

Brussels - The European Union will donate its Nobel Peace Prize money to projects aiding around 23 000 child refugees, the bloc's executive announced Tuesday.

The 930 000-euro (1.2-million-dollar) prize would be increased to a total 2 million euros with money from the EU's humanitarian aid budget, the European Commission said.

These funds would go to the UN agencies UNICEF and UNHCR, as well as the Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development, Save the Children and the Norwegian Refugee Council.

It has been earmarked for projects supporting 4,000 Syrian refugee children in northern Iraq; 5,000 Colombian displaced children; 11,000 Congolese children displaced in north Kivo plus refugees in Ethiopia; and a project benefiting 3,000 children in Pakistan, the commission said.

“We are honoured and grateful to the EU - not for UNICEF itself, but for the children we serve,” said UNICEF director Anthony Lake.

EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the Nobel Peace Prize -awarded in Oslo on December 10 - reminded him of the bloc's great past achievements.

“But what comes to my mind first is our present responsibility to shape a better future and to help those who are our hope for the future,” Barroso added. - Sapa-dpa

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