Saturday, January 22

Filipino justice authorizes Maria Ressa to seek her Nobel Prize in Oslo

(Belga) Philippine justice has authorized journalist and recent Nobel Peace Prize laureate Maria Ressa to travel to Oslo to receive her award.

A journalist with online media Rappler, founded by Maria Ressa, posted photos of the court ruling on Twitter. Cited in a pending court case, Ms. Ressa is currently at large after having paid bail. In 2020, she was convicted of defamation. According to Filipino justice, there is no risk that the winner will take advantage of the handover ceremony in the Norwegian capital to evade the justice of her country. She is authorized to go there for a five-day trip. She must then notify her return home within 24 hours. At the end of last month, the Philippine government objected to the winner going to Oslo to receive her prize, citing a “risk of flight”. Maria Ressa, co-founder of the investigative website Rappler, and Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in October for their efforts to “safeguard freedom of expression”. The former correspondent of the American channel CNN had asked the justice to be able to go to Norway for the ceremony scheduled for December 10. Maria Ressa, 58, in particular shone the spotlight on the violence accompanying the anti-drug campaign initiated by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, which, according to human rights organizations, has killed tens of thousands. Since Rodrigo Duterte was elected head of state in 2016, Maria Ressa and his media outlet have endured arrests, lawsuits and numerous online threats. Prosecuted in seven cases in total, including one for which she faces up to six years in prison, the journalist called them “ridiculous”. (Belga)

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