Ragip Zarakolu receives PL Foundation Peace Prize, criticizes radical intolerance in Turkey

On December 10 Turkish publisher, human rights defender Ragip Zarakolu was awarded PL Foundation Peace Prize for his extraordinary efforts in the areas of freedom of thought and expression. Zarakolu is an author of a number of works on Armenian Genocide.

The prize amounting to 100 thousand Danish krone is awarded to organizations and people who struggle for democracy without resorting to violence within the scope of United Nations Declaration of Human Rights.

President of the PL Foundation Paul Sogaard noted in his opening remarks that Ragip Zarakolu was chosen as a recipient of the prize for his long struggle for the freedom of thought and human rights, as well as for his efforts targeted at raising awareness about the Armenian Genocide committed at the hands of the Ottoman Empire 100 years ago. Zarakolu has been persecuted and arrested several times for his activity.

Zarakolu said, in turn, he dedicates the award to the memory of Hrant Dink, the slain editor-in-chief of the Turkish Armenian Agos weekly, and Armenian linguist and architect Sevan Nisanyan, who’s currently serving a term in Turkey.

He urged to do the utmost to speak out against and condemn the radical intolerance in Turkey and contribute to the release of detained intellectuals.

The event was attended by First Secretary of the Armenian Embassy in Denmark, a number of Turkish intellectuals and human rights defenders living in different countries, who have been exiled from Turkey for their activity.

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