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Statement of the MFA on the Award of the Václav Havel Human Rights Prize to Oyub Titiev


The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic congratulates Mr. Oyub Titiev, this year's laureate of the Václav Havel Human Rights Prize awarded by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. The sixth Václav Havel Human Rights Prize winner is the director of the Memorial office in Grozny that has contributed to defense of human rights through reporting on misuse of power by local authorities.

Memorial is a renowned Russian human rights organization active since the Soviet times. Mr Titiev was unable to receive the Prize in person, as he is in detention since January 2018. On international fora, the Czech Republic has been calling on Russian authorities to release him.

The Prize winner comes from a shortlist of three candidates. The other shortlisted candidates included Rosa María Payá, a Cuban dissident, and Nabeel Rajab, an opposition leader from Bahrain.

The Václav Havel Human Rights Prize has been awarded since 2013 by Council of Europe´s Parliamentary Assembly, in partnership with the Václav Havel Library and the Charta 77 Foundation, in recognition of exceptional civil society action in defense of human rights in Europe and beyond. The Czech Republic cofinances the Prize.

A conference in honor of the laureate held in Prague, organized by the Václav Havel Library, follows the Strasbourg award ceremony. This year's conference under the title “The Unbearable Lightness of Evil” will take place on October 10 in Prague Crossroad.