Russian journalist sells Nobel Prize medal for $103.5 million to help Ukrainians

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Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov, who won the Nobel Peace Prize last year, auctioned his medal for $103.5 million on Monday, and the proceeds will be donated to help Ukrainian refugee children.

Heritage Auctions tweeted that Muratov “auctioned off his 2021 #NobelPeacePrize to benefit the UNICEF Child Refugee Fund. It sold for $103.5 million.”

All proceeds from the auction, which concluded on World Refugee Day, will go towards UNICEF’s humanitarian response to Ukrainian children displaced by the war, according to the auction house.

“Right now, the prize is an opportunity to share it with people,” Muratov said ahead of the auction, encouraging people from all over the world to join the cause and make their contributions.

According to the description of the medal for sale by Heritage Auctions, the director of the Norwegian Nobel Institute, Olav Njølstad, supported the auction, calling it a “generous act of humanitarianism”.

The latest figures show that there have been more than 7.7 million border crossings from Ukraine and more than 5 million refugees from Ukraine have been registered across Europe since the Russian invasion in late February, according to the UN refugee agency. , UNHCR.

In an appeal for donations, UNICEF says that 7.5 million children in Ukraine have been deeply affected by the ongoing conflict, including being separated from their families, lacking basic supplies and resources and facing daily threats from explosives.

The Heritage Auctions description continues: “The aim is to use this event to raise awareness of refugee crises and for donations to continue long after the June 20 auction.”

The media crackdown in Russia

Muratov shared the 2021 Nobel Prize with Filipino-American journalist Maria Ressa for what the judges described as his “efforts to safeguard freedom of expression”.

Muratov is the editor-in-chief of the Russian independent media Novaya Gazeta. “He criticized Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the government’s use of military force, both inside and outside Russia,” according to the Nobel Peace Prize organization.

Six of the newspaper’s journalists were killed, including Anna Politkovskaya, a Kremlin critic who denounced human rights abuses in Chechnya.

After the invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin tightened its grip on the country’s independent media. In March, lawmakers criminalized the dissemination of “false” information that discredits the Russian military or calls for sanctions against the country.

The repression forced some media outlets to close their doors and their journalists to leave the country.

In early March, Novaya Gazeta said it had removed articles about the war in Ukraine from its website due to government censorship. That same month, the paper announced that it would suspend publication until the end of the war in Ukraine.

Anna Cooban, Eoin McSweeney, and Niamh Kennedy contributed to this story

Source: CNN Brasil

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