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EU's Sakharov Prize for Belarus dissidents sends a strong signal

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Belarus dissidents have defied all odds, bravely standing up to a state armed to the teeth and willing to deploy brute force to crush all opposition. The dissidents have refused to let themselves be intimidated, and the Coordination Council has worked tirelessly to fight for freedom. The country's dissidents have thoroughly earned the European Parliament's Sakharov Prize.

It was paramount that it be awarded collectively, not just to Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya but to all of Belarus' opposition figures, otherwise, it would have lost all meaning. These individuals have inspired and lent momentum to the tens of thousands who have taken to the streets of Minsk, week after week, following the country's rigged August election. They have rightly demanded their civil rights be honored and respected — this is what the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought is all about.

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© Deutsche Welle

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