'11 peace laureates honored

Country group Sugarland performs at Sunday's Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo, Norway. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman were honored.

OSLO, Norway -- British actress Helen Mirren hailed this year's Nobel Peace Prize to three women as historic, but said Sunday it's shameful that so few women have won the award since it was created in 1901.

Mirren said the award marks an "extraordinary moment in the history of women," but that it is "slightly shameful statistically that only 12 women have won it in a 112 years, when you think how important women historically have always been, specifically in terms of peace."

She spoke to The Associated Press before the Nobel Peace Prize concert in Oslo on Sunday, which she hosted with U.S. actress Rosario Dawson.

The concert will honor this year's peace prize winners, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and women's rights activist Leymah Gbowee, also of Liberia, and democracy activist Tawakkul Karman of Yemen. The three have boosted the number of female peace prize laureates from 12 to 15.

Mirren said this year's award is a historic moment, "but it is only a step on a journey that women are taking, and hopefully in 20-30 years time, we will be looking at a very different scenario in the world."

Mirren also pointed out that the three winners come from small grass-roots movements.

"It is so important for all of us to realize that these movements start in very, very small ways," she said, adding that it is important for young women to have role models like this year's peace prize winners.

Dawson said she was inspired by the laureates at Saturday's ceremony in Oslo City Hall.

"I love being able to be part of this story and help these voices being as loud as possible because I believe in them, and they are our future," she said.

Dawson said the peace prize helps grow the community of peace makers and "give them a platform that is just as strong as the corrupters'."

She added that their stories are representations "of who you can become, and it does not care where you start."