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New Delhi: Philippines journalist Maria Ressa and Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov, won the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize on Friday.
“Ms Ressa and Mr Muratov are receiving the Peace Prize for their courageous fight for freedom of expression in the Philippines and Russia,” Chairwoman Berit Reiss-Andersen of the Norwegian Nobel Committee told a news conference.
“At the same time, they are representatives of all journalists who stand up for this ideal in a world in which democracy and freedom of the press face increasingly adverse conditions,” she added.
The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize to Maria Ressa and Dmitry Muratov for their efforts to safeguard freedom of expression, which is a precondition for democracy and lasting peace.#NobelPrize #NobelPeacePrize pic.twitter.com/KHeGG9YOTT
— The Nobel Prize (@NobelPrize) October 8, 2021
The prize is the first for journalists since the German Carl von Ossietzky won it in 1935 for revealing his country’s secret post-war rearmament programme.
The Nobel Peace Prize will be presented on December 10, the anniversary of the death of Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel, who founded the awards in his 1895 will.
Ressa is the co-founder and CEO of Rappler, an independent news website based in the Philippines. Rappler has consistently shone a light on the Rodrigo Duterte government’s activities, including its controversial and violent ‘war on drugs’. Her reporting has made her a target of her country’s judiciary and online hate campaigns. Shea has been subject to a sustained campaign of gendered online abuse, threats, and harassment, and as the jury said her case is emblematic of global trends that represent a real threat to press freedom and therefore to democracy. Ressa also won the Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize 2021 was named Time magazine’s person of the year in 2018.
Muratov is the editor-in-chief of the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta. He edited the newspaper between 1995 and 2017. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, Novoya Gazeta is “the only truly critical newspaper with national influence in Russia today”. “Despite the Kremlin’s success in marginalising independent reporting, Novaya Gazeta continues to wield considerable influence with its uniquely uncompromising editorial line,” the CPJ continued.
(With Reuters inputs)