European Socialists and Democrats welcomed today’s decision of the Conference of Presidents to awards the Sakharov Prize for 2016 to Nadia Murad Basee and Lamiya Aji Bashar, advocates for the Yazidi community and for women surviving sexual enslavement by the so-called Islamic State.
S&D Group President Gianni Pittella said:
“We very much welcome the large support of the European Parliament to award the Sakharov prize to the Yazidi women as proposed by the S&D Group. By giving this award we want to draw the attention of the whole of Europe and of the international community to the dreadful and slave condition Yazidi women are living in under the terror of Daesh. This prize should also serve as a way of shining light on the situation of the religious minorities in the region.
“We want also to recognize the merits and the dignity of the others candidates, and the causes they represent, who are living in extremely difficult conditions and suffering terrible violations of their fundamental rights.”
Elena Valenciano, S&D MEP and chair of the European Parliament's subcommittee on human rights said:
"This year the prize goes to the most vulnerable, persecuted and forsaken ones: thousands of Yazidi women have suffered and continue to suffer the terror, extreme cruelty and barbarity of DAESH. But they haven't resigned to be victims. These brave and admirable women have decided to speak out and defend themselves and their people. By awarding the Sakharov prize to Nadia Murad Bassee and Lamiya Aji Bashar, the European Parliament gives a voice to all women and girls who are the first victims in case of conflict and also to all religious and ethnic minorities who are victims of genocide"