Nobel Peace Prize for journalists Ressa and Muratov

Two journalists who are critical of the regimes in their countries have been awarded this year's Nobel Peace Prize: Maria Ressa (the Philippines) and Dmitry Muratov (Russia). They stand for all those who stand up for the ideal of freedom of expression in a world in which "democracy and freedom of the press face increasingly adverse conditions," the Nobel Committee said in a statement. Europe's press is delighted, but there are those who would have liked to see a bolder choice.

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El Periódico de Catalunya (ES) /

Recognition also for those who have been silenced

El Periódico de Catalunya dedicates the prize to all journalists who put their lives at risk to do their job:

“The conditions under which Ressa and Muratov work are unfortunately not an exception in many regions of the world. On the contrary, the goal of destroying the messenger, subjecting him to pressure or distorting the facts is part of everyday life in all parts of the world. ... This year's Nobel Peace Prize is therefore a recognition of all those who have been silenced forever; of the persecuted and imprisoned who have chosen not to remain silent, and of those who firmly believe that an informed public opinion is fundamental to consolidate free societies.”

Novaya Gazeta (RU) /

The highest honour for freedom of expression

Muratov's paper Novaya Gazeta gathers Russian opinions on the Nobel Committee's decision, including that of journalist Sergei Parchomenko, who is delighted to press freedom supported in this way:

“The Nobel Peace Prize is a clear and strong message that countering threats to human rights is a global priority today, and the destruction of freedom of expression by totalitarian regimes is one of the greatest crimes against these human rights, causing the most serious damage to humanity. Muratov deserves this recognition and 'Novaya Gazeta' has thus become a symbol of journalistic freedom, journalistic courage and civic dignity, not only for Russia but for the whole world.”

Hromadske Radio (UA) /

Not uncompromising opposition

Political scientist and journalist Andriy Kulikov criticises in Hromadske Radio that Muratov is a person who makes compromises with the regime:

“Novaya Gazeta is without a doubt a media outlet in which opinions can be published in Russia that do not agree with the official line. Its work is subject to repressions and journalists who worked for 'Novaya Gazeta' have been murdered. At the same time, I also see that Muratov is forced to take certain steps that prove his loyalty to the regime. So he does not share the same opinion as the regime, but he does not necessarily want to engage in a major confrontation either.”

Observador (PT) /

Giving the award to Navalny would have been more courageous

A different choice would have sent a stronger signal to Russia, Observador argues:

“By awarding the prize to Muratov, the Nobel Committee has once again drawn attention to the lack of press freedom and freedom of expression in Russia. But it did not have the courage to award the prize to Navalny, the leader of the extra-parliamentary opposition who is now serving a lengthy prison sentence. That would have really irritated Putin and his 'boys'. Speaking of which, in 1975, the Nobel Committee did have the courage to award the prize to Soviet academic Andrey Sakharov for his fight for human rights under the communist dictatorship in the USSR.”