03 October 2005, Monday

The Swedish organization Forum for Living History awarded Arsen Sakalov, coordinator for the Chehcnya Justice Project, the 2005 Per Anger Prize for his efforts to bring justice to victims of human rights abuse in connection with the conflict in Chechnya.

Arsen Sakalov has worked to promote respect for human rights since he was forced to move from Chechnya to Ingushetia in 1999 because of the renewal of the armed conflict. From 1999 to 2001 Sakalov assisted Human Rights Watch, investigating and reporting on human rights abuse in Chechnya. In 2000 Sakalov was one of the founders of the Chechnya Justice Project, an initiative providing legal aid to victims of human rights abuse in Chechnya.

Since 2001 the Chechnya Justice Project has been implemented by the Stichting Russian Justice Initiative and the organization Pravovaia Initsiativa po Chechne, which was later closed. Arsen Sakalov, as part of the Stichting Russian Justice Initiative, currently represents more than 700 people in 106 cases, 81 of which have been submitted to the European Court of Human Rights.   


Arsen Sakalov was nominated to the Per Anger prize by the Swedish Helsinki Committee, which works closely with Arsen Sakalov and the Stichting Russian Justice Initiative.


The Per Anger Prize was established in 2004 by the government of Sweden to honour the memory of Ambassador Per Anger and is awarded for humanism and efforts to promote democracy. The prize is international and is selected by the Swedish organization Living History Forum.


Swedish ambassador Per Anger took the initiative to write a series of protection letters, which saved thousands of Jews in Budapest during the Second World War.


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