Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad awarded Nobel Peace Prize for fight against sexual violence in conflict

The Peace Prize has often had controversial winners (AP) Credit: AP/Press Association Images

The Nobel Peace Prize for 2018 has been awarded to Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict.

The chair of the committee Berit Reiss-Andersen said Denis Mukwege has spent large parts of his adult life helping the victims of sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

He was praised for condemning impunity for mass rape and criticised lack of action on using sexual violence against women as a weapon of war.

Nadia Murad is a Yazidi woman who was captured and abused by Islamic State.

The committee said she has shown "uncommon courage in recounting her own sufferings" and speaking up for others.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee received nominations for 216 individuals and 115 organisations.

Among those put forward this year were the Syrian civilian aid group the White Helmets, Russia’s Novaya Gazeta newspaper, Edward Snowden and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

Some of the bookies' favourites had included US president Donald Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un.

Last year’s winner was the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.

The 2018 prize is worth nine million Swedish kronor (£777,000).