Mirren Salutes Female Nobel Winners

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December 12, 2011 | 4:00am EST

Dame Helen Mirren toasted the three female winners of the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize on Sunday, calling the award an “extraordinary moment in the history of women”.
Mirren was joined by fellow actress Rosario Dawson to present the honors to Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, women’s right activist Leymah Gbowee, and democracy campaigner Tawakkul Karman at an event in Oslo, Norway over the weekend.

The veteran star told reporters she was proud to be involved in the ceremony, but wishes more female laureates had been picked for the award since it was created in 1901.

She tells the Associated Press, “(It’s) slightly shameful statistically that only 12 women have won it in 112 years, when you think how important women historically have always been, specifically in terms of peace… It is only a step on a journey that women are taking, and hopefully in 20, 30 years’ time we will be looking at a very different scenario in the world.

“In my personal experience, wherever there was a force for the positive, for creativity, it was almost always led by women and they are doing it with no recognition and under very difficult circumstances. It is so important for all of us to realize that these movements start in very, very small ways.”

The newest honourees boost the number of female recipients from 12 to 15.

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