MOSCOW, February 7 (RIA Novosti) – Russian veteran human rights activist Lyudmila Alexeyeva said on Thursday she is happy to be among the nominees for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.
“The Nobel Committee has plenty of choices and I cannot say that I deserve this award. But of course I am happy to be on the list of these 200 nominees,” Alexeyeva said.
“In some countries the human rights situation in much worse than in Russia… For example, rights activists in Iran or Afghanistan pay with their lives for this work,” she added.
Alexeyeva, 85, said she was nominated for the Peace Prize by US Senator Ben Cardin, co-chairman of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, whom she has never met in person.
However, the Moscow Helsinki Group, which Alexeyeva has headed since 1996, has been cooperating with the US commission for 37 years.
Other Peace Prize nominees include the 15-year old Pakistani girl Malala Yousafzai, who was shot by Taliban militants last October for her activism, Belarusian human rights activist Ales Belyatski, who is in jail, and two Vietnamese religious leaders, Father Thadeus Nguyen Van Ly and Thich Quang Do.
The winner of the Nobel Peace Prize will be announced in October.