New Delhi: Iranian women’s rights activist Narges Mohammadi was on Friday (October 6) awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for 2023 for her fight against the oppression of women in Iran and her fight to promote human rights and freedom for all.
“Her brave struggle has come with tremendous personal costs. Altogether, the regime has arrested her 13 times, convicted her five times, and sentenced her to a total of 31 years in prison and 154 lashes. Ms Mohammadi is still in prison,” the Nobel Institute said in a press release.
The committee also referred to the protests in September 2022 after the death of Mahsa Amini in the custody of the Iran’s morality police.
Mohammadi is the second Iranian woman to received the Nobel Peace Prize. Before her, Shirin Ebadi was awarded the prize in 2003. The two women’s paths crossed when Mohammadi began involved with the Defenders of Human Rights Center, founded by Ebadi in Tehran. In 2011, Mohammadi was arrested for the first time and sentenced to many years of imprisonment.
After her release on bail, Mohammadi began a campaign against the use of the death penalty in Iran, which executes one of the highest proportion of inhabitants annually. She was arrested again in 2015. In prison, she drew attention to the regime’s “systematic use of torture and sexualised violence against political prisoners, especially women”.
An article published in the New York Times on the one-year anniversary of Mahsa Amini’s killing, which Mohammadi smuggled out of prison, she wrote: “The more of us they lock up, the stronger we become.”
Narges Mohammadi is a woman, a human rights advocate, and a freedom fighter. In awarding her this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, the Norwegian Nobel Committee wishes to honour her courageous fight for human rights, freedom, and democracy in Iran.
The Nobel Institute said that this year’s Peace Prize also “recognises the hundreds of thousands of people who, in the preceding year, have demonstrated against the theocratic regime’s policies of discrimination and oppression targeting women”.