Gwangju Prize for Human Rights Announced

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A Thai law student Jatupat Boonpattararaksa arrested for sharing a critical article about his country’s new king that was posted on Facebook is this year’s winner of South Korea’s most prestigious human rights award.

Organizers for the Gwangju Prize for Human Rights said the parents of Jatupat “Pai Dao Din” Boonpattararaksa will receive the award on his behalf.

Under Thai law, insulting the monarchy is a crime that carries a prison term of three to 15 years. Critics say the country uses the law to silence political dissidents.

Gwangju Prize, which rewards contributions in human rights and democracy, was created in 2000 to honor a democratic uprising in Gwangju in May 1980 that South Korea’s then-military dictatorship violently suppressed, leaving hundreds dead.

Year Awardee Country
2017 Jatupat Boonpattararaksa Thailand
2016 Nguyen Dan Que  Vietnam
Bersih  Malaysia
2015 Latifah Anum Siregar  Indonesia
2014 Adilur Rahman Khan  Bangladesh
Mothers of Khavaran  Iran
2013 H.I.J.O.S  Argentina
2000 Xanana Gusmão  East Timor
2001 Basil Fernando  Sri Lanka
2002 Korean Association of Bereaved Families for Democracy  South Korea
2003 Dandeniya Gamage Jayanthi  Sri Lanka
2004 Aung San Suu Kyi  Burma
2005 Wardah Hafidz  Indonesia
2006 Malalai Joya  Afghanistan
Angkhana Neelaphaijit  Thailand
2007 Irom Chanu Sharmila  India
Lenin Raghuvanshi  India
2008 Muneer A. Malik  Pakistan
2009 Min Ko Naing  Burma
2010 Sushil Pyakurel    Nepal
2011 Binayak Sen  India
2012 Mun Jeong Hyeon  South Korea

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