Three prizes were awarded:
- In the Citizen-Journalist Category, to Zone9, an Ethiopian blogger collective created in 2012 that often draws attention to the government’s oppressive practices. One of its bloggers, Zelalem Kibret, had planned to attend the ceremony but his passport was confiscated as he was about to board his flight.
- In the Journalist Category, to Zeina Erhaim of Syria. Her uncle, Maen Said Essa, travelled to Strasbourg from Hamburg to receive the prize on her behalf. For a while Erhaim was based in London, but she returned to her homeland in 2012 to cover the war and to teach journalism to Syrian citizen activists.
- In the Media Category to the Turkish newspaper Cumhuriyet, the target of frequent persecution by the Turkish regime because of its reporting. The newspaper was represented at the ceremony by its editor, Can Dündar, who has himself been prosecuted.
During the ceremony, which was hosted by the journalist Bernard de la Villardière, tribute was paid to two Reporters Without Borders close relations who were killed in last Friday night’s shootings and suicide bombings in Paris.
Nawel Rafik-Elmrini, the Strasbourg deputy mayor responsible for European and international relations, also paid tribute to Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, an honorary citizen of Strasbourg.
The Reporters Without Borders-TV5Monde Prize has been awarded every year since 1992 to journalists and media outlets that have made a noteworthy contribution to the defence or promotion of freedom of information. As well as honouring the recipient, the award comes with 2,500 euros in prize money.
This was the 24th annual Reporters Without Borders Prize for Press Freedom. Three prizes are awarded every year – to the journalist, the media and the citizen-journalist of the year.
These prizes have helped to draw public attention to such “information heroes” as the Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, one of the 2004 laureates, who subsequently received the Nobel Peace Prize, and Raif Badawi, a 2014 laureate, who has just been awarded the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought.
Reporters Without Borders and TV5Monde also pay tribute to this year’s other nominees:
In the “journalist” category : Mahmoud Abou Zeid, aka Shawkan, (Egypt), Ali Anouzla (Morocco), Pravit Rojanaphruk (Thailand), Esdras Ndikumana (Burundi), Ahmed Abba (Cameroon), Raouf Mirkadyrov (Azerbaijan), Lázaro Yuri Valle Roca (Cuba), Julio Ernesto Alvarado (Honduras), Markus Beckedahl et André Meister (Germany), Federica Angeli (Italy), Mohammad Sedegh Kabodvand (Iran), Farida Nekzad (Afghanistan)
In the “media” category : Inkyfada.com (Tunisie), Meydan TV et Azerbaijan Saati (Azerbaijan), Iwacu (Burundi), Droit Libre TV (Burkina Faso), Hablemos Press (Cuba), Radio Globo y Globo TV (Honduras), Correo del Caroní (Venezuela), BIVOL (Bulgaria), Mukto-mona (Bangladesh), Geo News TV (Pakistan), Anh Ba Sam (Vietnam), Asia Plus (Tajikistan)
In the “netizen” category : Abduljalil Al-Singace (Bahrein), Oussama Al Najjar (UAE), Atena Farghadani (Iran), Roy Ngerng (Singapore), Charlie Smith (China), Huynh Thuc Vy (Vietnam), Ángel Santiesteban Prats (Cuba).