STOCKHOLM — The Right Livelihood Award — known as the “Alternative Nobel” — on Wednesay appealed to Saudi Arabia to free three jailed human-rights defenders and recipients of this year’s prize.
The foundation also urged that the kingdom stop “harassing and killing those who fight” for democracy. Ole von Uexkull, foundation head, said the three jailed Saudi men had “acted through peaceful means” in their activism.
Created in 1980, the annual Right Livelihood Award honors efforts that the prize founder, Swedish-German philanthropist Jakob von Uexkull, felt were being ignored by the Nobel prizes.
In September, the $110,000 cash award was given to three Saudi activists — Abdullah al-Hamid, Mohammad Fa-had al-Qahtani and Waleed Abu al-Khair. The honorary award was given to two Latin American anti-corruption crusaders — Thelma Aldana of Guatemala and Colombia’s Ivan Velasquez.
The foundation said two family members and Yahya Assiri, another Saudi rights activist, will attend the award ceremony planned in Stockholm next week.
Al-Qahtani and al-Hamid are founding activists of the Saudi Association for Civil and Political Rights. In 2013, al-Qahtani was sentenced to 10 years and al-Hamid got 11.