Iranian activist Narges Mohammadi awarded 2023 Nobel Peace Prize

Narges Mohammadi, a prominent women’s rights advocate currently serving a 12-year prison sentence, was announced as the recipient of the 2023 Nobel Peace Prize on Friday.

The Nobel Prize committee strongly called upon Iran to release Mohammadi, who has long been recognized as one of the nation’s leading activists, tirelessly championing both women’s rights and the abolition of the death penalty.

Currently detained in Tehran’s Evin Prison, Mohammadi faces multiple sentences, resulting in a total imprisonment period of approximately 12 years, as reported by the human rights organization Front Line Defenders. Her charges include spreading propaganda against the state.

Mohammadi holds the position of deputy head within the Defenders of Human Rights Center, a non-governmental organization founded by Shirin Ebadi, the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize laureate. Notably, Mohammadi became the 19th woman to receive the prestigious 122-year-old prize and the first since Maria Ressa of the Philippines shared the honor with Russia’s Dmitry Muratov in 2021.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) issued a statement on Friday, October 6, acknowledging the significance of awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to the imprisoned activist Narges Mohammadi. OHCHR spokesperson Elizabeth Throssell emphasized the courage and determination displayed by Iranian women in the face of various challenges.

“We’ve seen their courage and determination in the face of reprisals, intimidation, violence, and detention,” stated Throssell. “They’ve been harassed for what they do or don’t wear. There are increasingly stringent legal, social, and economic measures against them. This really is something that highlights the courage and determination of the women of Iran and how they are an inspiration to the world.”