National Dialogue Quartet, a group that helped preserve Tunisia's dreams of democracy in 2013, has won this year's Nobel Peace Prize, with the Nobel committee citing its "decisive contribution to the building of a pluralistic democracy in Tunisia."
"We are here to give hope to young people in Tunisia, that if we believe in our country, we can succeed," said Ouided Bouchamaoui, president of The Tunisian Confederation of Industry, Trade and Handicrafts, a group that's part of the Quartet.
Talking by phone with a Nobel representative today, Bouchamaoui was asked if the group has a leader; she replied, "No, it's a collaboration. We did it together, the four of us."
The Quartet stepped in at a time when Tunisia was sliding toward a civil war in the wake of its 2011 Jasmine Revolution. With representatives from a wide range of Tunisian society, the Quartet calmed a fledgling nation that was being torn apart by violence – and by distrust between Islamist and secular politicians.
NPR's Leila Fadel reports:
"The Quartet, made up of the General Labor Union; the Tunisian Confederation of Industry, Trade and Handicrafts; the Tunisian Human Rights League; and the Tunisian Order of Lawyers, was formed in the summer of 2013 to act as mediator between the warring parties."
"The committee held Tunisia up as an example of a peaceful transition to democracy in a region mired in violence."
In her brief interview this morning, Bouchamaoui also said that the group knows its job isn't over.
"We will continue our work," she said. "We are here to help our country. We are here to boost our investments."
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