MOSCOW (Reuters) - Irish rocker Bono and Google co-founder Sergey Brin have been nominated for a new prize created by former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev to mark his 80th birthday, the organizers said. The “Mikhail Gorbachev: the man who changed the world” awards are named after his three major policies which became the buzzwords during his rule.
The awards after his glasnost (openness), perestroika (restructuring) and uskorenie (acceleration) reforms will be presented at a lavish event in London on March 30.
“This is an award for those who have shown themselves to be people capable of changing the world for the better,” Gorbachev, who turned 80 on March 2, said late Thursday.
Other nominees are film director and producer Steven Spielberg, CNN founder Ted Turner, Martin Cooper, who made the world’s first mobile phone, and Brazilian former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
“We, civil society, should support such people,” Gorbachev’s daughter Irina Virganskaya said.
Gorbachev, who is blamed by many Russians for the collapse of the Soviet Union, has criticized Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in recent months, saying he should not return to the presidency next year.
Putin, who was president between 2000 and 2008, and his protégé President Dmitry Medvedev have said they will decide closer to the 2012 presidential election on who will run.
Reporting by Amie Ferris-Rotman; editing by Elizabeth Piper