Iranian Narges Mohammadi won the Nobel Peace Prize this Friday, October 6, for her struggles for human rights, which she leads from a prison in Tehran.

The winner of the Nobel Peace Prize is Iranian activist Narges Mohammad, the prize committee announced this Friday, October 6, 2023. The 51-year-old woman stood out for her courageous fight for human rights, which she has been carrying out for almost six months from Evin prison in Tehran. She actively fights against the death penalty, compulsory veiling and sexual assault in prisons. The Nobel Prize committee said the award was given to her for “her fight against the oppression of women in Iran and for the promotion of human rights and freedom for all.” This prize comes in a symbolic context where the “Women, Life, Freedom” movement, which echoes the fight of the winner, has been creating turbulence in Iran for more than a year.

Nobel Prize President Berit Reiss-Andersen said she hoped the winner would be released by December so she could receive her award. “If the Iranian authorities make the right decision, they will release her,” she said. “So she can be present to receive this honor, which is what we hope for above all.” The UN also called for the release of Narges Mohammadi this Friday, October 6: “The case of Narges Mohammadi is emblematic of the enormous risks that women take to defend the rights of all Iranians, assured the Office of the High Commissioner of Iran. UN Human Rights, in a message to AFP. We demand his release and that of all human rights defenders imprisoned in Iran.”

It is therefore a political choice that the Nobel committee made. The winner was convicted in 2016 in Iran for creating and leading a human rights movement and campaigning for the abolition of the death penalty. Narges Mohammadi is also an activist and vice president of the Defenders of Human Rights Center, the movement set up by a previous Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Shirin Ebadi, awarded in 2003.

Narges Mohammadi has had a string of arrests since 1998. Sentenced to several prison sentences, she must still be tried on new charges. She is currently incarcerated in Evin prison in Tehran where she must serve a sixteen-year sentence for “propaganda against the state”. The Reporters Without Borders (RSF) association denounces the methods of the Iranian justice system which have made him the victim of “real judicial harassment”.

From her cell, the activist continues her fight for human rights and manages to communicate with the outside world. In recent months, she has managed to grant interviews for various media, including RFI this summer. She also managed to send a letter to Vaclav Balek, president of the UN Human Rights Council, in which she opposed the nomination of the Islamic Republic to the presidency of the Social Forum for Human Rights. UN man. She also wrote a letter to the European Union, and denounced the situation of prisoners in Iran.

The winner’s husband, Taghi Rahmani, and their 17-year-old twins took refuge in France in 2012. Her family wanted to dedicate this prize “to all Iranians and in particular to Iranian women and girls who have inspired the entire world with their courage and their fight for freedom and equality.” She denounces the “arbitrary imprisonment” of the activist, before expressing her sadness because she “cannot be among us to share this extraordinary moment.”