Belarus activist arrested, anti-Putin organizations win Nobel Peace Prize

Belarusian activist Ales Bialiatski, the Russian international organization for Human Rights Memorial and the Ukrainian organization Center for Civil Liberties won the Nobel Peace Prize for 2022, announced this Friday (07).

“The Nobel Prize committee wanted to honor three champions of human rights, democracy and peaceful co-existence in neighboring Belarus, Russia and Ukraine . They honor Alfred Nobel’s (creator of the prize) vision of peace and coexistence, a vision so needed in the world today,” the committee stated.

The Nobel Peace Prize announcement was also made in Vladimir Putin’s birthday, but the organization denied that the award was a message to the Russian leader. “This award is not addressed to President Putin, either on his birthday or in any other sense, except that his government, like that of Belarus, represents an authoritarian government that suppresses human rights activists,” the committee stated.

The choice of the Nobel Peace Prize is seen as a condemnation of Putin and Alexander Lukashenko. Bialiatski, who is currently in prison, is one of the country’s main opponents. According to a spokeswoman for the Belarusian opposition, the activist is being held “in inhumane conditions”.

Even in 1980 years, Bialiatski was at the forefront of the pro- – Belarusian democracy. In 1996, he founded Viasna (Spring), which in the following years became a human rights organization that documents torture against political prisoners.

“They ( the Nobel Peace Prize winners 2022) have made an impressive effort to document war crimes, human rights violations and abuses of power. Together, they demonstrate the importance of civil society to peace and democracy,” he said. Berit Reiss, chairman of the Norwegian Nobel committee.

Shortly after the award, the organizers of the award asked the Belarusian authorities to release the activist, who has been arrested since 2020.

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