29/01/2013 Front Line Defender: Saudi and Tunisian Human Rights Defenders Awarded the 2012 Olof Palme Prize

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Saudi and Tunisian Human Rights Defenders Awarded the 2012 Olof Palme Prize

Radhia Nasraoui and Samar Badawi recieving the prize.

On 25 January 2013 the Olof Palme Memorial Fund for International Understanding and Common Securityheld an award ceremony for the 2012 Prize recipients Saudi human rights defender Waleed Abu Al-Khair and Tunisian human rights defender Radhia Nasraoui.

Waleed Abu Al-Khair is a lawyer and head of the Saudi Arabian Human Rights Monitor (SAHRM). He was chosen for the Prize due to what the Olof Palme Fund describe as his ‘strong, self-sacrificing and sustained struggle to promote respect for human and civil rights for both men and women in Saudi Arabia’.

Radhia Nasraoui is a human rights lawyer and works to defend the victims of human rights violations. She is also the President of theAssociation de lutte contre la torture en Tunisie and has long been a victim of harassment by the Tunisian authorities because of her work.

The prize was accepted on behalf of Waleed Abu Al-Khair by his wife Samar Badawi as authorities refused to allow him to depart from Jeddah airport. While reading the speech prepared by the defender she declared that ‘My husband is not allowed to travel but he feels due to your tribute that he is part of a big human appeal, an appeal for freedom, justice, dignity, and forgiveness.’

For more information on the prize please visit the offical website of the Olof Palme Memorial Fund

Read more about the ceremony and the work of Waleed Abu Al-Khair on the website of the Gulf Centre for Human Rights

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