Three Afghan education rights activists nominated for 2023 Sakharov Prize

Hannah Neumann, a member of the European Parliament, announced on Thursday that three dedicated education rights activists from Afghanistan have been nominated for the prestigious 2023 Sakharov Prize.

“These courageous individuals operate clandestine schools, journey to remote regions, and facilitate distance learning,” Neumann revealed in a post on social media platform X.

Neumann, along with Petras Austrevicius and over 50 other members of the European Parliament, collectively decided to put forward the names of these three activists for consideration for the 2023 Sakharov Prize.

Despite facing threats and attacks from the Taliban, these activists persist in their vital work, Neumann emphasized.

The nominated activists are:

Parasto Hakim: She is the founder of numerous covert schools and is currently supporting her organization, SRAK, while in exile.

Marzia Amiri: After being compelled to flee the country, Amiri continues to operate secret schools and offer online courses.

Matiullah Wesa: For many years, Wesa organized educational activities in remote areas of Afghanistan. However, he has been held in a Taliban prison for the past five months due to his advocacy for children’s education.

The Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, awarded by the European Parliament, honors individuals and groups who have dedicated themselves to the defense of human rights and freedom of thought. Education activist Malala Yousefzai is one of the winners of the award.