Nobel prize an honour

CEREMONY: Sue Coleman-Haseldine at the Nobel Peace Centre in Norway for the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony earlier this month. Picture: Supplied
CEREMONY: Sue Coleman-Haseldine at the Nobel Peace Centre in Norway for the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony earlier this month. Picture: Supplied

Holding the Nobel Peace Prize in her hands was a special moment for Ceduna’s Sue Coleman-Haseldine.

Ms Coleman-Haseldine said it meant a lot to be involved in the ceremony in Oslo earlier this month to award the Nobel Peace Prize to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), of which she is a member.

She has just returned from Norway where the anti-nuclear weapons group was recognised for its the push to establish a treaty to ban nuclear weapons and work to promote full implementation of the treaty.

The group, which was founded in Melbourne a decade ago, is made up of more than 450 civil society organisations in more than 100 countries around the world and had its name etched among the esteemed winners list.

“The whole Nobel ceremony and the trip was really good,” she said.

“To actually hold the Nobel Peace Prize laureate was a special moment.

“I am so pleased that ICAN won it, this is an international group effort with benefits for people from all around the world.”

Ms Coleman-Haseldine said attending the ceremony in Oslo and having ICAN’s work recognised was a highlight for her.

“It meant a lot to me, it is a very prestigious event and royalty was there,” she said.

“To attend the ceremony where our work was recognised was an exceptional feeling.

“The prize says a lot about ICAN’s work because people are starting to believe that we don’t need the nuclear bombs – they are weapons of mass destruction and it means a lot to people around the world to ban them.”

Ms Coleman-Haseldine made a speech at the ceremony, where she touched on her story growing up in the shadow of the Maralinga nuclear tests in the 1950s and early 1960s.

“ICAN has become close to my heart because I don’t like anything nuclear.

“After Maralinga, where so many in my family and the towns were affected, I hope something like that never happens again.

“I want children to live in a nuclear-free world.”

She said the next step for the group was to attempt to get more countries to sign the anti-nuclear treaty, including Australia.