– Yoko Initiates Peace Prize-



Yoko Ono, widow of the late Beatle John Lennon, has inaugurated her own peace award by giving $50,000 (£31,900) prize money to Israeli and Palestinian artists.

Ono bestowed the first Lennon Ono Grant for Peace to Israeli Zvi Goldstein and Palestinian Khalil Rabah on Wednesday at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, for their efforts to remain “creative and inspirational” amid the tensions of war.

The award was made on the day that would have been Lennon’s 62nd birthday. Lennon was shot dead outside his New York apartment in 1980 by Mark Chapman.

Earlier this week, Chapman – who was jailed after he admitted killing the celebrated musician – failed to secure his release from prison after the New York State parole board turned down his second parole bid.

John Lennon and Yoko Ono campaigning for peace

The bed protest became world famous

At the awards ceremony, Ono said: “Imagine all the people living life in peace,” echoing the words to Lenon’s peace anthem Imagine.

She added that future grants would be given only to artists living “in regions of conflict”.


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