Iran : We dedicate this Nobel to all those fighting under the “Woman, Life, Freedom” flag, says Narges Mohammadi’s husband

At a press conference held by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) in Paris on 6 October, the husband and one of the children of imprisoned Iranian journalist and women’s rights defender Narges Mohammadi expressed their pride at the news that she has been awarded the 2023 Nobel Peace Prize. Detained since November 2021, Mohammadi continues to cover Iran’s human rights abuses from Evin prison, near Tehran.

“They have saluted the fight waged by voices that will never be extinguished,” awarding a prize that will “give these voices even more strength to continue making themselves heard,” said Taghi Rahmani, a few hours after journalist Narges Mohammadi won the Nobel Peace PrizeSpeaking at the press conference organised by RSF in Paris, Mohammadi’s husband, who is also a journalist, said: “It is symbolically very important that this prize is focused on Iran, that this prize goes to a prisoner, and therefore to all the regime’s prisoners, who constitute an important resistance force in the country.”

Rahmani has been cut off from any contact with his wife since her rearrest on 12 April 2022 and does not know if she has heard that she has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. “I know she will be happy,” he said. “But this prize is also a responsibility. A responsibility towards Iranians and the fight they are waging for their freedom and dignity. She is a political prisoner, and this award exposes her too. She knows it, she accepts it. This is the price of the struggle.”

Targeted by the Iranian government because of her writing and her campaigns, Mohammadi has been arrested 13 times since her first arrest in 1998. After being jailed yet again in November 2021, she was granted a medical furlough on 22 February 2022 but was returned to prison on 12 April 2022 and has not been let out since then.

From her cell, she regularly manages to send letters informing the world of the mistreatment suffered by her fellow detainees. This often leads to reprisals by her jailers, including drastic restrictions on her right to visits and phone calls. She cannot receive phone calls from abroad, including from her two children, who live in Paris.

At today’s press conference, her teenage son, Ali Rahmani, said he has not seen his mother for the past eight years and has not spoken to her for more than a year. “I am very, very proud of her, and I am very happy,” he said, referring to the award. “This prize is also for the fight we are all waging in Iran.”

“As Narges Mohammadi's husband, Taghi Rahmani, has pointed out, the prize not only rewards the sacrifices and struggles of this journalist and women's rights activist, but also pays tribute to the battles waged by her colleagues, including the journalists who continue to cover the situation in Iran from both inside and outside prison. This prize is a clear signal to the Iranian authorities – to release Narges Mohammadi and the 19 other journalists who are currently in prison for doing their job to report the facts.”


Jonathan Dagher
Head of RSF’s Middle East desk

Standing alongside his son, his lawyer, Chirinne Ardakani, and RSF’s secretary-general, Taghi Rahmani dedicated “one of the world’s most prestigious prizes” to “all the men and women who fight under the flag of Woman, Life, Freedom.” This is the rallying cry heard at all the protests in Iran since the young Kurdish student Mahsa Amini died as a result of police violence on 16 September 2022.

Taghi Rahmani added: “We are not fools. We know the adversary we are fighting, a cynical regime that wants to silence all forms of dissent. But it is this lucidity that enable us to continue our fight, a fight waged jointly by civil society, activists, lawyers and journalists.”

Ranked 177th out of 180 countries in RSF's World Press Freedom Index, Iran is one of the world’s most dangerous countries for reporters. At least 80 journalists have been arrested for covering the protests since 16 September 2022, while other journalists who have not been jailed, including those living abroad, have been subjected to extreme forms of harassment

177/ 180
Score : 24.81
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