UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize

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The UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize, created in 1997, honours a person, organization or institution that has made an outstanding contribution to the defence and/or promotion of press freedom anywhere in the world, especially when this has been achieved in the face of danger.

The prize, worth US$ 25,000, is awarded each year on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day on 3 May.

The prize is named after Guillermo Cano Isaza, the editor of the Colombian newspaper El Espectador, who was murdered in Bogotá on 17 December 1986. Cano was a vocal critic of the country's powerful drug barons.

Each year, an independent jury[1] of six news professionals selected by the UNESCO Director-General selects a winner from the many nominations submitted by non-governmental organizations working in the field of press freedom, and by UNESCO Member States. The jury remains in charge for a period of three years, renewable once.

The anti-mafia italian journalist Marilù Mastrogiovanni serve as Chair of the jury in 2021.[2] Other members of the Jury are:

  • Wendy Funes (Honduras), investigative journalist;
  • David Dembele (Mali), Editor-in-chief of the Depêche du Mali/L’Investigateur;
  • Hamid Mir (Pakistan), Executive Editor of Geo Television Pakistan;
  • Alfred Lela (Albania), Political Analyst on News 24 and Founder and Director of Politiko;
  • Zainab Salbi (Iraq), As a journalist, she created and hosted several shows including: #MeToo, Now What? on PBS (2018)

Award Winners[edit]

Year Recipient Country
1997 Gao Yu ChinaChina
1998 Christina Anyanwu NigeriaNigeria
1999 Jesús Blancornelas MexicoMexico
2000 Nizar Nayyouf SyriaSyria
2001 Win Tin MyanmarMyanmar
2002 Geoffrey Nyarota ZimbabweZimbabwe
2003 Amira Hass IsraelIsrael
2004 Raúl Rivero CubaCuba
2005 Cheng Yizhong ChinaChina
2006 May Chidiac LebanonLebanon
2007 Anna Politkovskaya RussiaRussia (posthumous award)
2008 Lydia Cacho Ribeiro MexicoMexico
2009 Lasantha Wickrematunge Sri LankaSri Lanka (posthumous award)
2010 Mónica González Mujica ChileChile
2011 Ahmad Zeidabadi IranIran
2012 Eynulla Fatullayev AzerbaijanAzerbaijan[3]
2013 Reeyot Alemu EthiopiaEthiopia
2014 Ahmet Şık TurkeyTurkey
2015 Mazen Darwish SyriaSyria
2016 Khadija Ismayilova AzerbaijanAzerbaijan
2017 Dawit Isaak SwedenEritreaSweden/Eritrea
2018 Mahmoud Abu Zeid[4] EgyptEgypt
2019 Kyaw Soe Oo & Wa Lone[5] MyanmarMyanmar
2020 Jineth Bedoya Lima ColombiaColombia
2021 Maria Ressa[6] PhilippinesPhilippines
2022 Belarusian Association of Journalists BelarusBelarus
2023 Niloofar Hamedi, Elaheh Mohammadi, Narges Mohammadi[7] IranIran

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Jury". UNESCO. Retrieved 28 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Two leading women journalists to join 2021 Jury of the UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize". UNESCO. 15 January 2021. Retrieved 28 January 2021.
  3. ^ "World Press Freedom Day 3 May in Tunis". Afrique en ligne. 24 April 2012.
  4. ^ "Egyptian photojournalist Mahmoud Abu Zeid, aka Shawkan, to receive 2018 UNESCO/Guillermo Cano Press Freedom Prize". 23 April 2018.
  5. ^ "Jailed Reuters reporters, U.S. border photographers win Pulitzer Prizes". Reuters. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
  6. ^ "Embattled Philippine journalist wins UN press prize". Yahoo! News. Agence France-Presse. 27 April 2021. Archived from the original on 27 April 2021. Retrieved 27 April 2021.
  7. ^ "Three imprisoned Iranian women journalists awarded 2023 UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize". UNESCO. Retrieved 3 May 2023.

External links[edit]