The Joint Mobile Group was selected by the International Human Rights Community. The Award is given to Human Rights Defenders who have shown deep commitment and face great personal risk. The aim of the award is to provide protection through international recognition. The Joint Mobile Group was created by Igor Kalyapin, after several human rights activists working in Chechnya were murdered. The organization documents human rights abuses in Chechnya and seek legal redress.
Speaking of the effect of international publicity, Igor Kalyapin, said: “… when the international community is watching us it is more difficult for the authorities to take steps against us…” Micheline Calmy-Rey, Chair, Martin Ennals Foundation, said “The choice of the Jury has again shown that human rights defenders are the most crucial actors and can make a difference on the ground.” The Jury also selected two other recipients of the New Martin Ennals Prizes:Mona Seif, founder of the “No To Military Trials for Civilians” movement in Egypt. Mona has brought together activists, lawyers, victims’ families, local stakeholders and started a nationwide movement against military trials.
Mario Joseph, referred to as Haiti’s most important Human Rights lawyer, he has worked on some of the most important cases in Haiti, including the current case against the former dictator Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier.
The Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders (MEA) is a unique collaboration among ten of the world’s leading human rights organizations to give protection to human rights defenders worldwide. The Jury composed of: Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Human Rights First, Int’l Federation for Human Rights, World Organisation Against Torture, Front Line Defenders, International Commission of Jurists, German Diakonie, International Service for Human Rights and HURIDOCS.