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DUBAI — The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded Friday to Narges Mohammadi, an imprisoned Iranian human rights activist and the fifth individual to obtain the prize whereas incarcerated.

Norwegian Nobel Committee Chair Berit Reiss-Andersen mentioned the prize was awarded “for her struggle in opposition to the oppression of ladies in Iran and her struggle to advertise human rights and freedom for all.”

The prize will solid a world highlight on the struggle for ladies’s rights within the Center Jap nation, the place ladies have taken to the streets in protest beneath the banner “Girl, Life, Freedom,” following the loss of life in custody of a younger girl in September 2022.

Whereas the protests have subsided, the problems that provoked them haven’t, with experiences rising of one other younger girl falling afoul of authorities prior to now week for not sporting correct Islamic headgear and ending up in a coma.

The incident happened quickly after the anniversary of the opposite younger ladies’s loss of life. Authorities have denied any wrongdoing or foul play. Activists, together with Mohammadi, have solid doubt on their assertions.

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“Her courageous battle has include great private prices,” Reiss-Andersen mentioned about Mohammadi. “Altogether, the regime has arrested her 13 instances, convicted her 5 instances, and sentenced her to a complete of 31 years in jail and 154 lashes.”

“In awarding her this yr’s Nobel Peace Prize, the Norwegian Nobel Committee needs to honor her brave struggle for human rights, freedom and democracy in Iran,” Reiss-Andersen mentioned, describing Mohammadi as a “freedom fighter.”

Mohammadi’s Instagram web page carried a message of gratitude following the information, however added it was inconceivable to talk to her the day the prize was introduced. “As you could know it’s inconceivable to make a cellphone name in Evin jail for political prisoners of the ladies’s ward on Fridays,” the publish learn, “so we now have to attend till tomorrow to listen to from Narges and provides her the excellent news.”

Reporting on Mohammadi’s win, Iranian state media famous she was imprisoned for safety violations and accused former Iranian Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi of encouraging her to “escalate” her “extremist conduct” to be acknowledged by the committee.

Iran typically responds to criticism of its human rights report by accusing European and American officers of utilizing biased, insincere concern for ladies to advertise interventionist insurance policies.

Within the Nineties, Mohammadi studied physics earlier than working as an engineer and turning into an advocate for equality and girls’s rights, and campaigning to abolish the loss of life penalty. In 2011, she was arrested for the primary time for her efforts to help incarcerated activists and their households.

Accused of “spreading propaganda,” the 51-year-old is now serving 10 years in Tehran’s infamous Evin Jail. There, she works to oppose the situations inflicted on her and fellow feminine inmates, particularly the usage of torture and solitary confinement.

Final yr, Mohammadi printed the e book “White Torture” on Iran’s use of solitary confinement and sensory deprivation in opposition to her and fellow prisoners.

“The goal of white torture is to completely break the connection between an individual’s physique and thoughts to power the person to recant their ethics and actions,” she wrote.

A yr after Mahsa Amini’s loss of life: Repression and defiance in Iran

Mohammadi wrote the e book’s preface throughout a quick furlough from jail for medical causes final yr. She closed the part with a pledge, “They may put me behind bars once more, however I cannot cease campaigning till human rights and justice prevail in my nation.”

And this yr, on the anniversary of the loss of life of Mahsa Amini, the younger girl arrested for a gown code violation who died within the custody of Iran’s morality police final yr, Mohammadi staged a protest inside Evin Jail. She and three different ladies burned their headscarves, in response to a publish on her social media web page.

Earlier this week after experiences circulated {that a} teenage lady was in a coma after a confrontation with Iran’s morality police, Mohammadi slammed Tehran’s response, describing it as “indicative of its concerted efforts to forestall the reality from coming to mild,” in response to a publish shared on her Instagram web page.

Mohammadi’s dedication to proceed working regardless of her imprisonment “carries a strong message,” mentioned a fellow Iranian activist and former colleague, talking on the situation of anonymity due to safety issues.

“Narges Mohammadi is without doubt one of the only a few who not solely has stayed in Iran, however stays lively, whether or not she is out or imprisoned,” she mentioned. Her instance is an inspiration inside the activist group and amongst younger individuals who proceed to face makes an attempt by the nation’s management to quash dissent, the activist added.

Iran is finishing up waves of arrests concentrating on activists, journalists and intellectuals in an try and stamp out dissent and tighten social restrictions. After protests erupted following Amini’s loss of life final yr, Iranian authorities arrested some 20,000 individuals.

Nobel Prize in drugs awarded to scientists who laid basis for messenger RNA vaccines

Mohammadi’s husband, Taghi Rahmani, is an activist who additionally spent years in Iranian prisons and now lives in exile in France with their twin kids.

He advised The Washington Publish in Could that they first met whereas faculty college students at Imam Khomeini Worldwide College in Qazvin, Iran. “She was vigorous and zeal for residing,” he mentioned.

In a single case, he recalled, college officers ordered the uprooting of a area of poppy flowers — a logo of affection in Persian tradition — that yearly bloomed on campus. Mohammadi went straight to the campus clergy to protest.

“You bloodbath individuals, and now you’re massacring these flowers,” he recalled she advised them. Mohammadi enjoys different pastimes, resembling mountain climbing and singing, “however in fact each music that she sings is about freedom and liberty,” Rahmani mentioned.

“One factor that I actually love about her is that she at all times lives for others,” he mentioned. “Even after I’m speaking about these items [about her], she says, ‘No, it’s not about me. Speak about different individuals.’ It’s actually her mission in life to be the voice for the unvoiced.”

“She at all times believes that it has to come back from you,” he mentioned. “She at all times says, you stand up and do it.”

Mohammadi has been beforehand honored by Reporters With out Borders, the PEN America Literary Gala and the United Nations’ World Press Freedom Prize for her work defending human rights and her dedication to journalism beneath risk.

Mohammadi and two different Iranian journalists acknowledged by the United Nations “paid a hefty value for his or her dedication to report and convey the reality,” mentioned Zainab Salbi, chair of the worldwide jury of media professionals who selected the press freedom prize winners.

“We’re dedicated to honoring them and guaranteeing their voices will proceed to echo worldwide till they’re secure and free,” Salbi mentioned.

It’s time for the 2023 Nobel Prizes. Right here’s what you might want to know.

Previous detained individuals to obtain the prize embrace German pacifist Carl von Ossietzky in 1935, Myanmar democracy campaigner Aung San Suu Kyi in 1991, Chinese language rights activist Liu Xiaobo in 2010, and final yr’s winner, Belarusian human rights advocate Ales Bialiatski.

Arguably probably the most well-known of the prizes set out by Alfred Nobel in his will, the Peace Prize features a gold medal and an award of greater than $1 million for a person or group most contributing to “fraternity between nations,” decreasing standing armies or holding peace conferences. The definition has since been expanded to incorporate humanitarian work and the battle for human rights.

Whereas it was as soon as politicians and leaders successful the celebrated prize, lately it has more and more gone to organizations and people selling human rights and humanitarian work. Amid warfare in Europe, final yr’s prize went to human rights activists and organizations in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine, whereas in 2021, it was awarded to Russian and Philippine journalists for selling freedom of expression.

The final political chief to obtain the prize, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in 2019 for peace efforts with neighboring Eritrea, got here beneath criticism after a brutal civil warfare erupted within the northern a part of the African nation.

Norwegian author Jon Fosse receives the 2023 Nobel Prize in Literature

Alone among the many prizes, that are handed out by Scandinavian establishments, the Peace Prize is awarded by a five-member Norwegian committee chosen by the Norwegian parliament, in accordance with Nobel’s needs.

The potential political motives of the award are at all times intently scrutinized to see what sort of message the committee is sending the world. There have been 351 candidates for the 2023 Nobel Peace Prize — the second-highest variety of candidates, in response to the group.

The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded 103 instances between 1901 and 2022. Different well-known Peace Prize winners embrace women’ training advocate Malala Yousafzai, civil rights campaigner Martin Luther King Jr. and Catholic humanitarian Mom Teresa, amongst others.

Katalin Kariko and Drew Weissman, whose analysis laid the groundwork for messenger RNA vaccines, have been awarded the Nobel prize in drugs on Oct. 2. (Video: Reuters)

Earlier this week, the Nobel Prize in drugs was awarded to 2 scientists whose analysis laid the groundwork for messenger RNA vaccines that remodeled the specter of the coronavirus pandemic. On Tuesday, three scientists who probed the blurry realm of the electron have been awarded theNobel Prize in physics.

The Nobel Prize in chemistry was awarded Wednesday to 3 scientists for his or her basic discoveries in nanotechnology — particles as soon as thought of impossibly small to make, with purposes in tv screens and LED lamps. On Thursday, a Norwegian novelist and playwright Jon Fosse received the Nobel Prize for literature.

Schemm and Suliman reported from London. Miriam Berger in Washington contributed to this report.

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