The Paris-based media watchdog, Reporters Without Borders has awarded its 2010 Press Freedom Prize to two “symbols of courage,” jailed Iranian journalist Abdolreza Tajik and the Somali radio station Radio Shabelle.
“This year we are honoring a courageous journalist, Abdolreza Tajik, and a beleaguered radio station, Radio Shabelle,” Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Jean-François Julliard said. “These laureates work into two countries, Iran and Somalia, where reporting the news is a constant battle.”
The awards were presented at a ceremony in Paris on Thursday night. The prize recipients are chosen by an international jury of journalists and human rights activists based on significant contributions made to the defense and promotion of press freedom around the globe. Nobel peace laureate Shirin Ebadi accepted Tajik’s prize on his behalf.
“I regret that Abdolreza is not here to receive this award in person. His only crime has been to write, to write the truth. For doing that, he is being held in solitary confinement in Evin prison, without his lawyer being able to see him or have access to his case file,” Ebadi said after accepting the prize.
Abdolreza Tajik has written for a number of newspapers including Fath, Bonyan, Bahar, Hambastegi and Shargh.