Breaking news: MEA 2019 goes to Sudanese refugee activist caught up in Australia’s off-shore detention policy

February 13, 2019

The Jury of the Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders just announced that the 2019 Laureate is Abdul Aziz Muhamat, a Sudanese refugee activist being effectively detained on Manus island in Papua New Guinea as part of Australia‘s controversial policy of deterring arrivals.

This award sheds light on the very cruel refugee policy of the Australian Government”, stated the Laureate, and “brings attention to the dangers and ill-treatment faced by refugees all over the world..”

Aziz took it upon himself to become the spokesperson for hundreds of asylum seekers in spite of assaults, threats and harassment. He tries to care for his fellows who suffer from all kind of indignities and lack medical care. He stated that he feels compelled to return to the island and its inhuman conditions to continue to fight for freedom and safety for all of them. [see also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2018/12/04/mea-nominee-aziz-abdul-muhamat-suffers-under-australias-endless-detention-policy/]

He was honoured this evening at a well attended ceremony organised by the City of Geneva together with two other finalist, the Turkish human rights lawyer Eren Keskin and Colombian community leader Marino Cordoba Berrio. Short films produced by True Heroes Film were projected to show their work and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Batchelet, addressed the audience.

For more information see the website of the MEA: http://www.martinennalsaward.org and https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2018/10/24/breaking-news-ennals-award-announces-its-3-finalists-for-2019/

MEA nominees 2019

One Response to “Breaking news: MEA 2019 goes to Sudanese refugee activist caught up in Australia’s off-shore detention policy”


  1. […] Breaking news: MEA 2019 goes to Sudanese refugee activist caught up in Australia’s off-shore d… […]


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