OSLO — The 2021 Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to journalists Maria Ressa of the Philippines and Dmitry Muratov of Russia.
The Norwegian Nobel Committee cited their fight for freedom of expression, stressing that it is vital in promoting peace.
Ressa, in 2012, co-founded Rappler, a news website that has focused “critical attention on the (President Rodrigo) Duterte regime’s controversial, murderous anti-drug campaign,” the Nobel committee said.
She and Rappler “have also documented how social media is being used to spread fake news, harass opponents and manipulate public discourse.”
Ressa told a Norwegian TV station that after winning the award, “the government (of the Philippines) will obviously not be happy.”
“I’m a little shocked. It’s really emotional,” she said. “But I am happy on behalf of my team and would like to thank the Nobel Committee for recognizing what we are going through.”
Muratov was one of the founders of the independent Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta in 1993. The committee said the paper is “an important source of information on censurable aspects of Russian society rarely mentioned by other media.”
The Nobel committee noted that since the launch of Novaya Gazeta, six of its journalists had been killed, among them Anna Politkovskaya, who covered Russia’s bloody conflict in Chechnya.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov praised Muratov as a “talented and brave” person.
“We can congratulate Dmitry Muratov — he has consistently worked in accordance with his ideals,” Peskov said in a conference call with reporters.