LUIZ INÁCIO LULA DA SILVA
International Four Freedoms Award
Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Union representative and President of Brazil from 2003-2010, is honored for his extraordinary work on behalf of the people of Brazil. Lula has demonstrated a lifelong commitment to social and economic justice and worked to help foster a climate of peace and reconciliation among the nations of the world.
Lula’s rise from abject poverty to the Presidency of Brazil, and his determination to rid Brazil of the extreme poverty and social injustice that for too long has plagued the less fortunate of his countrymen, has been an inspiration to the world community.
Freedom of Speech and Expression Award
Al Jazeera receives the award for its steadfast commitment to freedom of the press and its longstanding efforts to provide independent, impartial news for an international audience and to offer a voice to a diversity of perspectives from under-reported regions.
Al Jazeera’s dedication to this most fundamental human right —the right to the free expression and reportage of issues and ideas— exemplifies the meaning and accomplishment of the Four Freedoms. Al Jazeera Satellite Channel started on November 1, 1996 after the BBC closed down its Arabian television station.
Al Jazeera English started broadcasting in 2006. Throughout its 15-year existence Al Jazeera's reporters have met resistance; not intimidated by vehement opposition, legal trials, or death threats, they continue reporting the world news with integrity. H.E. Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim bin Mohammed al-Thani will accept the award on behalf of Al Jazeera.
HIS ALL HOLINESS ARCHBISHOP BARTHOLOMEW I
Freedom of Worship Award
His All Holiness Archbishop Bartholomew I is nominated for his extraordinary efforts on behalf of religious freedom and his dedication to a dialogue of reconciliation among Christians, Muslims and Jews, which he started together with His All Holiness Pope John Paul II.
Bartholomew’s lifetime commitment to secure basic religious freedom, not only for the people in his native Turkey, but also for the peoples of central and Eastern Europe, has identified him as one of the outstanding figures on the international scene who is truly dedicated to the meaning and accomplishment of the Four Freedoms. Bartholomew I, also known as the "green Patriarch" gained worldwide respect for his efforts for the environment.
ELA RAMESH BHATT
Freedom from Want Award
Ela Ramesh Bhatt is nominated for her extraordinary efforts on behalf of some of the poorest and most oppressed women in India.
Bhatt’s sheer determination and lifetime commitment to secure that most basic of human rights —freedom from want— which led her, the “gentle revolutionary,” to found the Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) and the Cooperative Bank of SEWA. SEWA has placed Bhatt at the forefront of those working to help women in India lift themselves out of poverty by creating chances for women to be self-employed, work under justifiable circumstances and therefore enjoy financial independence and self-respect.
Freedom from Fear Award
This year’s Freedom from Fear medal is awarded to Hussain al-Shahristani, Deputy Prime Minister for Energy in the Iraqi government, for his lifelong commitment to democratic values, and his extraordinary efforts to help transform his beloved nation of Iraq into a free, prosperous and stable democracy.
After 11 years imprisonment in Abu Ghraib, for his refusal to cooperate in building nuclear weapons and his involvement in "religious activities", Hussain al-Shahristani escaped via Iran to Canada. Al-Shahristani’s commitment to secure basic political and religious freedoms for all Iraqis under the rule of law, has not only endeared him to his fellow countrymen, but has also earned him the respect of the international community. Thanks to his steadfast adherence to these fundamental values he gained widespread recognition.