Record number of candidates nominated for 2009 Nobel Peace Prize

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STOCKHOLM, February 27 (RIA Novosti) - A total of 172 people and 33 organizations have been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize 2009, setting a new record, the Norwegian Nobel Committee said on Friday.

The previous record was recorded in 2005 when 199 people and organizations were nominated.

The Nobel Peace Prize is one of the five Nobel Prizes established in the 1895 will of Alfred Nobel. The first Nobel Peace Prize was awarded in 1901.

Every year, the Norwegian Nobel Committee, comprising five people elected by the Norwegian parliament, sends out letters to members of parliament, political leaders, international organizations and other "qualified people," proposing they put forward their own candidate.

The deadline for nominations is February 1, the list of nominees is compiled in late February. From March to August the Norwegian Nobel Committee carries out preparatory work for the final selection in September. The award ceremony is held in Oslo on December 10, the anniversary of Nobel's death.

The names of the nominees and other details are not disclosed for the period of 50 years.

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev received the prize in 1990 "for his leading role in the peace process which today characterizes important parts of the international community."

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