One of Mr. Moon’s predecessors, Kim Dae-jung, was awarded the 2000 prize in part for his work “for peace and reconciliation with North Korea in particular,” but his counterpart, Mr. Kim’s father, did not receive similar recognition.
“It could be an absolute scandal if President Kim Jong-un would get the Peace Prize,” said Mr. Ramos-Horta, who said he nominated Mr. Kim of South Korea for the award nearly two decades ago. “And it could be hugely controversial if President Trump would get the Nobel Peace Prize because of other policies, other actions, other statements.”
“But President Moon of South Korea, on his own, also wouldn’t succeed unless he gets North Korea, Kim Jong-un, to go along in the peace process,” he added. “In any peace process, it takes two to tango, sometimes more.”
Even in cases where the award was seen as premature or the recipient has not lived up to the standards of international peace, it cannot be revoked.
Another Nobel laureate, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, one of three laureates to receive the award while under arrest, has had other awards revoked because of her failure to even acknowledge the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya Muslim minority in Myanmar. The European Union will always hold the award for creating a “fraternity between nations,” even after Britain’s vote to leave the bloc and increased divisions over how to handle refugees.
“It would be impossible for us to take responsibility for how people act or behave themselves in years after they receive the award,” Ms. Reiss-Andersen said. “I believe the authority of the Peace Prize is so strong, that exactly because you are awarded the Peace Prize, you will always be under public scrutiny and have to answer to the public for your actions.”
And in the case of Mr. Obama, the Iran nuclear deal — a signature diplomatic initiative that is often cited as a fulfillment of the expectations set by his 2009 Peace Prize — is now in peril, jeopardized by Mr. Trump’s decision this week. It is possible, some said, that Mr. Trump’s order to withdraw the United States from the deal will counter the consideration of his diplomatic work on the Korean Peninsula.
“We hope that the prize can encourage peaceful development,” Ms. Reiss-Andersen said. “The prize itself cannot secure a peaceful development. That is up to the persons involved at the end of day.”