25 NOVEMBER 2005

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Sir Bob Geldof's showed his more stylish side when he picked up a humanitarian award in Rome this week. The Irish star, who is famous for his casual presentation, was looking unusually dapper in a tailored pinstripe suit with buttoned-down collar when he appeared in the Italian capital.

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The former rock star, who was being honoured with the prestigious Man of Peace award at the World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates, found himself in some esteemed company, as former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev was there to present him with the trophy.

Last month, when the Live8 organiser learned he was to receive the prize, he confessed to feeling a little taken aback. "It's more than an honour, it almost ridiculous," he explained. "It's almost too big, all the Nobel Peace prize winners voting for you as their Man of Peace."

Bob had regained his composure by the time he took to the podium in the Julius Caesar Hall, however. And it came as no surprise to the photographers and journalists gathered there when he took the opportunity to reprimand political leaders for their failure to tackle the problems facing impoverished nations. "Africa must be allowed to trade itself out of poverty," he said. "The EU must break the deadlock and as of today it has failed to do so. We live in a broken world which has never been healthier or wealthier, but some 500 kilometres south of here they die of want."

Among those applauding the former Boomtown Rats singer was his partner Jeanne Marine and old friend Sting. The exclusive gathering is staged each year to allow previous Nobel winners discuss their thoughts on peace, security and economic development issues.

Bob Geldof, Sting, Mikhail Gorbachev

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev presents Bob with the award. "It's almost too big, all the Nobel Peace prize winners voting for you as their Man of Peace," the Irishman had previously observed
Photo: AFP
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Veteran rocker Sting and Bob's partner Jeanne stand alongside the man of the moment in Rome's Julius Caesar Hall
Photo: Getty Images

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