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Honoring Iranian People’s Struggle, EU Parliament Awards Sakharov Prize to Mahsa Amini’s Family

Iran EU Parliament min

In a significant move, the European Parliament has granted the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought to Mahsa Amini’s family on behalf of the Iranian people and their steadfast pursuit of a free and just Iran. Named after Soviet physicist and human rights advocate Andrei Sakharov, this award represents the highest recognition by the European Parliament for individuals or organizations that have made exceptional contributions to the defense of human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Mahsa (Jina) Amini, a young Kurdish woman, tragically lost her life due to the harsh actions of the regime’s morality police. Her death sent shockwaves through the nation, sparking a renewed wave of protests calling for the overthrow of the clerical dictatorship.

Despite the Iranian authorities’ attempts to project strength and declare the 2022 uprising as successfully quelled, the movement for regime change continues to inspire and unite Iranians nationwide. Representing the resilience and determination of the Iranian people, Mahsa Amini’s family was honored to accept the Sakharov Prize at a ceremony held in Strasbourg, France.

At the outset of the award ceremony, EU Parliament President Roberta Metsola expressed that the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought was bestowed not only upon Jina Masha Amini but also on the courageous women, men, and youth persisting in their struggle for rights and change despite mounting challenges.

“This year’s Sakharov Prize serves as a tribute to all the brave and defiant women, men, and young people in Iran who, despite increasing pressure, continue to push for change,” Metsola stated. She emphasized, “The courage and resilience of Iranian women in their fight for justice, liberty, and human rights will not be stopped. Their voices cannot be silenced, and while they are not here today, their presence will be felt.”

Metsola assured, “The European Parliament hears you and supports you. They want you to know that you are not alone.”

While en route to France to accept the EP 2023 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, Mahsa Amini’s parents and brother were detained by Iranian authorities at Tehran airport, and their passports were seized. Consequently, they are now under a travel ban.

The award has been widely hailed as a powerful recognition of the Iranian people’s struggle for freedom and democracy. It serves as a beacon of hope amidst the ongoing repression in Iran and reaffirms the international community’s solidarity with the Iranian people’s aspirations for a better future.

The Sakharov Prize, conferred upon Amini’s family, stands as a testament to the unwavering courage and resilience of the Iranian people, reminding us that the pursuit of freedom and justice knows no bounds and that the voices of the oppressed will not be silenced.