Maziar Bahari, the founder of IranWire and Journalism is Not a Crime (JINC), has been nominated for the prestigious Tulip Award, which recognizes commitments to furthering and improving human rights around the world.
The prize, which is awarded by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, honors innovative approaches to the support and promotion of human rights, encouraging groups and individuals to pass on shared experiences that can benefit fellow human rights defenders and initiatives by awarding €100,000 to the winner.
There are 30 candidates altogether, which includes a combination of individuals and non-governmental organizations.
Bahari was nominated for his work promoting the rights of Iranian journalists and religious, ethnic and sexual minorities in Iran. By showcasing the work of independent journalists, documentary filmmakers and citizen reporters, JINC raises awareness of the difficulties Iranian media workers and civil society activists face, from arbitrary arrests, illegal trials and torture to smear campaigns and intimidation of family members.
Most recently, JINC commissioned a mural in London’s Shoreditch neighborhood in support of jailed artist Atena Farghadani. It also published the results of research it commissioned into the psychological wellbeing of Iranian journalists.
The award has also nominated Hadi Ghaemi, who heads up the influential International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, which uses radio, podcasts and web publishing to disseminate key research, Dr Massouda Jalal, who promotes women’s participation in democracy-builiding in Afghanistan and Burmese student leader Phyoe Phyoe Aung.
“In these turbulent times human rights defenders are of tremendous importance. These individuals and organizations often risk their own lives to stand up for human rights and human dignity,” said Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders, who will announce the winner on International Human Rights Day, December 10.
Public voting is open until Midnight on September 16.