Dawit Isaak, an imprisoned Eritrean-Swedish journalist was awarded the 2017 UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize.
He will be bestowed with this prestigious award in recognition of his courage, resistance and commitment to freedom of expression. He will be awarded on World Press Freedom Day (3 May 2017).
About Dawit Isaak
- Dawit Isaak is a Swedish-Eritrean playwright, journalist and writer. He was born on 28 October 1964.
- He had moved to Sweden in 1987, where he later became a citizen and went into self-imposed exile.
- He had returned to Eritrea after its independence and became one of the founders and reporters of Setit, the first independent newspaper in the country.
- Eritrean government has held him in prison in Eritrea since 2001 without trial and considered him a traitor. He journalist was arrested in a crackdown on the media. His present location is unknown.
About UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize
- The award was established in 1997 by UNESCO’s Executive Board in honour of Colombian journalist Guillermo Cano Isaza.
- It honours a person, organization or institution for their outstanding contribution to the defence and promotion of freedom of press anywhere in the world, especially achieved in the face of danger.
- The award carries cash prize of $25000. It is funded by Colombia based Cano Foundation and Finland based Helsingin Sanomat Foundation.
Guillermo Cano Isaza: He was a Colombian journalist who was assassinated on 17 December 1986 in front of the offices of his newspaper, El Espectador in Bogota.