Winning the Nobel peace prize is a significant victory for all women suffering from sexual violence, Yazidi campaigner Nadia Murad said on Friday in her first remarks after jointly winning the award.
“It means a lot, not just for me, for all of these women in Iraq and all the world,” she said in a phone interview with the Nobel prize website after sharing the prize with Congolese doctor Denis Mukwege for their work in fighting sexual violence in conflicts around the globe.
“It wasn’t easy for me to go out and speak about what happened to me because it wasn’t easy, and specifically for women in the Middle East to go and talk about (being) sex slaves,” she said in English by phone from Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Nadia Murad, awarded the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize, is the witness who tells of the abuses perpetrated against herself and others. She has shown uncommon courage in recounting her own sufferings and speaking up on behalf of other victims.#NobelPrize pic.twitter.com/NeF70ig09J
— The Nobel Prize (@NobelPrize) October 5, 2018
Switching to Kurdish, with a translation given by her fiance Abid Shamdeen, she said: “For those small communities that are being persecuted, this prize tells me that their voices are being heard.
“We hope (it) will be a voice for all the women that are suffering from sexual violence in conflict in many other places.”
Murad, 25, was kidnapped by Islamic State militants in 2014 and endured three months as a sex slave before managing to escape.
She was one of thousands of Yazidi women and girls who were abducted, raped and brutalized by jihadists during their assault that year on the Kurdish-speaking minority, which the United Nations has described as genocide.