The Nobel Prize for Literature was canceled due to a dispute in the Swedish Academy for this year. The Nobel Peace Prize, which is traditionally awarded in Oslo, is given to the Jesad Nadia Murad (25) and the Congolese doctor Denis Mukwege (63). They have made known how sexual violence against women in war and conflict areas is used as a weapon.
At a press conference in the run-up to the ceremony on Sunday, the two laureates called on the world community to combat violence against women in wars. „We have reached a point where it is not enough to talk about it and denounce it,“ said the gynecologist Mukwege. „We really have to act now.“
Mukwege operates a hospital in the Congo, where he helps severely injured women who were raped with gun barrels, bayonets and broken bottles. The Nobel Prize is very important, according to Mukwege, because now the whole world knows which violence women are exposed to. „Women’s bodies have become battlefields,“ Mukwege said. The international community has a responsibility. „The perpetrators must know that the world will affect them for their actions.“
The Iraqi Nadia Murad herself was a victim of sexual violence as a weapon. She had been held for several months by the terrorist militia Islamic State (IS) as a sex slave because of their religion and had been brutally abused. Murad managed to escape. Meanwhile, she lives in Baden-Württemberg and the USA and fights for the terrorists to come to an international court. „This one award can not undo violence against women and children,“ Murad said. „But he can open doors so we can get even more governments to prosecute these acts.“
Mukwege said he has great respect for Murad because she talks about what happened to her. „Silence keeps the violence alive, taboo keeps the rape culture alive,“ said the doctor. Rapists would continue to rape because they knew that the women out of shame would not talk about it. „Nadia has overcome that to fight the rape culture.“