India's Kailash Satyarthi and Pakistan's Malala Yousafzai were awarded the Nobel peace prize 2014 jointly for "showing great personal courage and in their struggle against the suppression of children and for the right of all children to education".
Child labour activist Satyarthi became India's 8th Nobel laureate while the champion for children's education Malala became her country's second citizen to be given the most coveted prize. Malala is also the youngest to be awarded the globally prestigious annual prize.
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The two will split the £690,000 ($1.11m) prize announced by the Norwegian Nobel Committee.
The committee said 60-year-old Satyarthi maintained Mahatma Gandhi's tradition and headed various forms of protests and demonstrations, all peaceful, focusing on the grave exploitation of children for financial gain.
According to the committee "he has also contributed to the development of important international conventions on children's rights".
READ ALSO: Malala: Idol to the world, outcast at home
"Children must go to school and not be financially exploited. In the poor countries of the world, 60% of the present population is under 25 years of age. It is a prerequisite for peaceful global development that the rights of children and young people be respected. In conflict-ridden areas in particular, the violation of children leads to the continuation of violence from generation to generation," the committee said.
Talking about Malala, the committee said "Despite her youth, Malala has already fought for several years for the right of girls to education, and has shown by example that children and young people, too, can contribute to improving their own situations. This she has done under the most dangerous circumstances. Through her heroic struggle she has become a leading spokesperson for girls' rights to education".
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The struggle against suppression and for the rights of children and adolescents contributes to the realization of the "fraternity between nations" that Alfred Nobel mentions in his will as one of the criteria for the Nobel peace prize.
The Nobel committee said it regards it as an important point for a Hindu and a Muslim, an Indian and a Pakistani, to join in a common struggle for education and against extremism.
The committee said "Many other individuals and institutions in the international community have also contributed. It has been calculated that there are 168 million child labourers around the world today. In 2000 the figure was 78 million higher. The world has come closer to the goal of eliminating child labour".
The Nobel Institute in Oslo saw a record 278 candidates for the Nobel Peace Prize for 2014. Around 47 of these were organizations. The Committee had said that 278 is the highest number of candidates ever. The previous record was 259 from 2013.
The Nobel peace prize has been awarded to 124 Laureates - to 100 individuals and 24 organizations till now.
Since the International Committee of the Red Cross was awarded three times and Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees was awarded twice there are 100 individuals and 21 organizations that have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) - an international organisation working since 1997 to convince countries to give up chemical weapons besides checking and confirming the destruction of existing chemical weapons had won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2013.
Malala has won the European Union's human rights award, was named one of Time magazine's most influential person in 2013 and was nominated for the Nobel peace prize last year.
President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy and President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso congratulated the newly crowned Nobel laureates. "We wholeheartedly congratulate Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi - the winners of this year's Nobel Peace Prize. Today's decision pays tribute to the undisputable right to education for all children, equal rights for women and the important campaign against their oppression.
We are delighted for Malala, who so courageously stood up for her rights and paid a high price for something that many in our countries take for granted. But we cannot forget the millions of other children around the world who are denied their right to education. This is a victory for all of them. Young boys and girls who aspire to learning".
They added "And we are delighted for Kailash Satyarthi, who staunchly has advocated children's rights across the globe. As the first donor of development aid worldwide, the EU and its member states have constantly worked to root out poverty, one of the prime causes of child labour.
The decision equally sends a strong message to those who try to impeach on the fundamental right to education, by violence, suppression and cowardly threats.
But Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi will not be threatened and neither will the European Union. We urge all leaders worldwide to redouble their efforts for the education of all children and to intensify the fight against poverty".
The European Union, when it received the 2012 Nobel peace prize decided to use the award money precisely for this purpose by dedicating it to children in conflict zones under the EU's Children of Peace initiative