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2013 Right Livelihood Awards presented in Stockholm

Press Release, Stockholm, 2 December 2013

2013 Right Livelihood Awards presented in Stockholm

Today, the 2013 Right Livelihood Awards will be presented to Paul Walker from the U.S., Raji Sourani from Palestine, Denis Mukwege from the DR Congo and Hans R. Herren from Switzerland. The Award Ceremony will take place in the Swedish Parliament, Second Chamber, from 4 pm.

In their award acceptance speeches, the Laureates will refer to the current state of chemical weapon abolition and the next steps to be taken to accomplish their global elimination; they will highlight the human rights situation of the Palestinians under Israeli occupation and the power of international law, if applied. Also, solutions will be presented that can end the massive rapes of women in Congo and secure a safe and sustainable global food supply.


The following quotes are taken from the award acceptance speeches prepared by the Laureates:

“Syria’s accession to the Chemical Weapons Convention in September is a major, historic step forward toward full universality of the abolition regime, but six countries still remain outside of the CWC – Angola, Egypt, Israel, Myanmar, North Korea, and South Sudan. Now that Syria has become the 190th State Party, it is time that both Israel and Egypt, the only two remaining Mideast countries outstanding from the CWC, join the Convention, and begin working towards a complete Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone in the Middle East.”

RAJI SOURANI (Palestine):
“International law, and international human rights law, recognises our dignity, our worth, and our value as individuals. It says that we are all equals, regardless of our nationality, our gender, or age, or our financial situation. It is this sense of equality that has been missing so far, and which must be established. In Palestine, as in so many other situations around the world, until we are recognised as human, as equals, there can be no progress.“

“The peoples of the African Great Lakes region are waiting impatiently for the implementation of the Addis Ababa Framework Agreement for Peace, Security and Cooperation, which is the first peace deal tackling the root causes of violence in the DRC and in the region. It’s a last-chance agreement and it requires the unwavering political courage of the signatory states and the international community for its effective implementation.
There will be no peace without justice and the struggle against impunity is one of the keys to ending violence against women.“

“How can we nourish the world in fifty years’ time, given the uncertainties resulting from climate change, growing population and diminishing natural resources? The answer to this question is to change course in global agriculture, that business as usual is not an option and a new paradigm, beyond the green revolution, is needed, and fast. The new paradigm needs to address agriculture’s multifunctionality, and its key role in the three sustainable development dimensions: environment, society and economy… in that order.”

Jakob von Uexkull, Founder and Co-Chair of the Right Livelihood Award Foundation, who will present the Awards, says:
“While we all have different visions of our preferred futures, our key task now is to ensure that the range of possible choices and freedoms for future generations is expanded and not limited further. This is the function of the Right Livelihood Award. It does not propagate one worldview or future. It celebrates human diversity and it celebrates hope, that inner fire of those who walk their talk and do not give up. Today, we celebrate four exceptional individuals who every day prove us right in our belief in hope – the force that makes us take big steps when even small steps seem impossible.”

More quotes from the laureates about how they plan to use the prize money and how they have perceived the impact of the Right Livelihood Award are available at:

Further information and media resources

The prepared award acceptance speeches will be made available today at 4 pm, when the Award Ceremony begins, at our online press room:

There will be a live web-stream from the ceremony accessible via our website:

For videos and high-resolution pictures, including a group photo, please refer to:
!! Please note that we are going to upload video and pictures from the Award Presentation during/after the ceremony, so please check back !!

For more information about the 34th Award Presentation, as well as the Laureates’ programme in Stockholm, please see our press release of November 21:


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