You need freedom, rule of law and justice (November 8 2012) You need freedom, rule of law and justice (November 8 2012)

Nasrin Sotoudeh the 49 year old Iranian human rights lawyer imprisoned for six years in solitary confinement has won the European Union’s prize for human rights and freedom of thought, the Sakharov Prize. Renowned for representing imprisoned Iranian opposition activists and politicians following the disputed June 2009 Iranian presidential elections, as well as prisoners sentenced to death for crimes committed when they were minors, had been imprisoned herself on charges of spreading propaganda and conspiring to harm state security. An Aljazeera articles states “…cut off from the outside world for defying the country’s leadership. Nasrin Sotoudeh, an imprisoned human rights lawyer, and Jafar Panahi, the filmmaker, were awarded the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for their courage in defending their own and others’ basic freedoms, the parliament said. Named in honour of Soviet scientist and dissident Andrei Sakharov, the prize has been awarded by the European Parliament annually since 1988. “The award … is a message of solidarity and recognition to a woman and a man who have not been bowed by fear and intimidation and who have decided to put the fate of their country before their own,” Martin Schulz, European Parliament president, said as he announced the winners. …”I know that you require water, food, housing, a family, parents, love, and visits with your mother,” Sotoudeh began in a letter written from prison to her children, who were prevented from seeing her after she refused to wear a chador, a full length traditional garment. “However, just as much, you need freedom, social security, the rule of law, and justice.”


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