Prize recipients

2012 – Radhia Nasraoui and Waleed Sami Abu al-Khair

Radhia Nasraoui, human rights defender and lawyer, is awarded the 2012 Olof Palme Prize, for her untiring work against torture and impunity for more than three decades. As a concerned and patriotic citizen, she has under severe pressure defended human rights in her country and challenged authorities under the motto "We must use our voices. Not saying anything makes us accomplices of the oppression". Waleed Sami Abu al-Khair receives the 2012 Olof Palme Prize for his strong, self-sacrificing and sustained struggle to promote respect for human and civil rights for both men and women in Saudi Arabia. Together with like-minded citizens and colleagues, Waleed Sam Abu AlKhair does so with the noble goal of contributing to a just and modern society in his country and region.
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2011 – Lydia Cacho and Roberto Saviano

The 2011 Olof Palme Prize is awarded to Lydia Cacho from Mexico, and Roberto Saviano from Italy, for their tireless, selfless and often lonely struggle for their ideals, and for the benefit of fellow human beings. They are individuals who with extraordinary courage are acting despite the risk to their lives. They remind us of the necessity to direct our attention toward countries that we would otherwise regard as democracies, countries in which particularly women and children are cruelly exploited, enslaved and destroyed by global criminal networks, which in turn also threaten democracy itself as a system.
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2010 – Eyad El Sarraj

The 2010 Olof Palme Prize is awarded to the Palestinian psychiatrist Eyad El-Sarraj, peace and human rights activist in Gaza, for his self-sacrificing and indefatigable struggle for common sense, reconciliation, and peace in a region characterized by violence, occupation, repression and human misery. In his professional and political work, Eyad El-Sarraj has stood on the side of the individual human being, regardless of nationality, gender or social position. He has brought into the light the destructive influence of repression on mental health. He has shown the connections arising between confinement, hopelessness, desperation and violence, and how this is neglected by both Palestinian and Israeli authorities.
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2009 – Carsten Jensen

The Olof Palme Prize 2009 is awarded to the Danish writer and debater Carsten Jensen. In a time when solidarity and compassion are under pressure, the need for brave, engaged and determined defenders of human rights is greater than ever. As a successful writer, Carsten Jensen has also been an uncompromising and knowledgeable defender of every individual's equal worth. In words and in actions, he has stood up for the weak and the vulnerable in his own society and around the world.
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2008 – Dr. Denis Mukwege

The Olof Palme Prize 2008 is awarded to Dr. Denis Mukwege for his work for peace and human rights in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), one of the world's most conflict ridden countries. In a region where man's most brutal sides are shown in the violence against women and its proportions have reached unimaginable levels, Dr. Denis Mukwege has made it his life work to unceasingly fight in the opposite direction. The Panzi Hospital, founded and headed by Dr. Mukwege, serves peace, understanding and solidarity in a way worthy of imitation through the work with the women who are the most exposed victims of this conflict.
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2007 – Parvin Ardalan

The Olof Palme Prize for 2007 goes to Parvin Ardalan, who has succeeded in making the demand for equal rights for men and women a central part of the struggle for democracy in Iran. As a result, the women’s movement for civil rights and liberties has, to a great extent, spread geographically as well as socially. Despite persecution, threats and harassment, Parvin Ardaln has been persistent in her struggle and never compromised her ideals.
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2005 – Daw Aung San Suu Kyi

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi for her unyielding fight for a democratic Burma. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is an outstanding example of the efforts to attain democracy by the people of Burma, where respect for human rights, ethnic unity, and a life in peace remain only a dream. To her compatriots she is known as the ’Iron Butterfly’, a name alluding both to her peaceful struggle and her courage and strength of character.
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2004 – Ljudmila Aleksejeva, Sergej Kovaljov, Anna Politkovskaja

The Olof Palme Prize 2004 is awarded to three Russian advocates of human rights. Respect for human rights in Russia is of major importance for safety and stability in the rest of the world. The three prize winners are all influential symbols of the long battle for human rights in Russia. With their great courage, often matched with considerable personal sacrifice, risk-taking and dogged insistence in never compromising the fundamental ideals of strengthening free speech and a free press, they thereby represent those who have influenced and promoted democratic development in the country.
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2003 – Hans Blix

For his work against the spread of weapons of mass destruction, and for common security on the basis of international law. He has under circumstances of strong external pressure demonstrated an independence and a commitment to principle which have inspired respect and admiration throughout the world.
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