Norway's Nobel committee tapped former Finnish president and peace advocate
Martti Ahtisaari as this year's peace laureate. Lisa Bryant has more on the
71-year-old politician - and his distinguished career.
Over the past 20 years, the Nobel statement said, Ahtisaari has played a prominent role in resolving serious and long-lasting conflicts in Namibia, Indonesia, Kosovo and Iraq - among other areas.
In an interview on Norwegian television, Ahtisaari cited peace talks in 1989-1990 in the southwestern African nation of Namibia as his greatest achievement. Those talks helped pave the way for Namibia's independence from south Africa.
Ahtisaari began his career as a school teacher before joining Finland's foreign ministry. He served as a United Nations undersecretary and secretary of state for the Finnish foreign ministry before being elected president of Finland in 1994.
Ahtisaari founded the Crisis Management Initiative in 2000. The Helsinki-based non-profit organization provides solutions for ending conflicts around the world.
Former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore won last year's Nobel peace prize along with the U.N. panel on climate change for their work on raising attention to the threat of global warming.