Sakharov Prize 2020: MEPs select the finalists 

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The democratic opposition in Belarus, Guapinol activists and Berta Cáceres, and the Archbishop of Mosul were shortlisted for the 2020 Sakharov Prize on Monday.

Following a joint vote by MEPs in the Foreign Affairs and Development committees on Monday 12 October, the finalists for the 2020 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought are:

  • The democratic opposition in Belarus, represented by the Coordination Council, an initiative of brave women and political and civil society figures;

  • Guapinol activists and Berta Cáceres in Honduras;

  • Mgr Najeeb Michaeel, Archbishop of Mosul, Iraq.

Next steps

The European Parliament’s Conference of Presidents (President and political groups’ leaders) will select the final laureate on Thursday 22 October. The prize itself will be awarded in a ceremony in Parliament’s hemicycle on 16 December.

Background

The Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought is awarded each year by the European Parliament. It was set up in 1988 to honour individuals and organisations defending human rights and fundamental freedoms. It is named in honour of Soviet physicist and political dissident Andrei Sakharov and the prize money is 50 000 euros.

Last year, the prize was given to Ilham Tohti, an Uyghur economist fighting for the rights of China’s Uyghur minority.