Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent
Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent is an award established in 2012 by the New York City-based Human Rights Foundation (HRF). According to HRF President Thor Halvorssen, the prize recognizes individuals who "who engage in creative dissent, exhibiting courage and creativity to challenge injustice and live in truth".
Named in honor of Czech dissident playwright and politician Václav Havel, who had died the previous December, the award was founded with the help of his widow, Dagmar Havlová. Google co-founder Sergei Brin and Paypal co-founder Peter Thiel provided part of the prize's funding.
The 2012 inaugural prize was awarded jointly to Chinese dissident Ai Weiwei, Burmese democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi, and Saudi Arabian women's rights activist Manal al-Sharif. The awards were presented on 9 May in Oslo, Norway by the Oslo Freedom Forum. Al-Sharif was reportedly pressured out of her job with Saudi Aramco, the national oil company of Saudi Arabia, when she requested time off to attend the ceremony. Presenter Garry Kasparov stated that the three awardees had "shown not only courage, but passion and humor, that exposes the inhumanity of dictatorship".
The 2013 recipients of the prize were: Syrian cartoonist Ali Ferzat, North Korean democracy activist Park Sang Hak, and Cuban civil society group the Ladies in White. The awards were presented on 15 May by the Oslo Freedom Forum. Berta Soler, leader of the Ladies in White, received the award on her first journey outside of her native Cuba, while also receiving the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought.
- "The Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent". Human Rights Foundation. 11 April 2012. Retrieved 16 May 2012.
- "Inaugural Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent awarded to Ai Weiwei, Manal al-Sharif, and Aung San Suu Kyi". HavelPrize.org. 2 May 2012. Retrieved 16 May 2012.
- "A Prize for Creative Dissent". The Wall Street Journal. 13 May 2012. Retrieved 16 May 2012.
- Jamie Weinstein (14 May 2012). "Saudi woman driver: I was pressured out of my job for my activism". The Daily Caller. Retrieved 16 May 2012.
- "Ceremony: Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent". Oslo Freedom Forum. 9 May 2012. Retrieved 16 May 2012.
- "Recipients". The Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent. Retrieved June 20, 2013.
- Tamaya, Juan. "Dissidents say they are returning to Cuba reenergized". The Miami Herald. Retrieved June 20, 2013.