Iranian Rights Activist Wins Nobel Peace Prize
Freedom House today welcomed the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Shirin Ebadi, an Iranian human rights defender and activist.
Ms. Ebadi is a leading champion of human rights, specifically women's rights, in her native Iran. One of Iran's first female judges, Ms. Ebadi was forced from her position after the country's Islamic revolution in 1979. Her activism on behalf of women's and children's rights resulted in numerous jailings by Iranian authorities.
"This is a momentous day for human rights in Iran and throughout the Muslim world, where, unfortunately, women bear the brunt of abuse and neglect," said Freedom House Executive Director Jennifer Windsor. "The Nobel Committee has sent a clear signal that despite Tehran?s repressive methods, courageous human rights activities such as Shirin Ebadi, and the multitude of other voices calling for reform in Iran, are being heard," she said.
In its latest report on Iran, Freedom House rated the country "Not Free," noting that "several pieces of legislation intended to give women equal rights, such as a bill on divorce law that parliament approved in August 2002, have been rejected by the Council of Guardians."
The full text of the report is available online.
Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.