Chair of the Nobel Foundation, a working body responsible for most of the work in selecting Nobel Prize winners, Berit Reiss-Andersen has commented on the Kremlin’s latest expansion of its foreign agent list, which now includes Novaya Gazeta Editor-in-Chief and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Dmitry Muratov, The Guardian reported on Saturday, citing AFP.
She noted that Muratov received the Nobel Peace Prize “for his efforts to promote freedom of speech and freedom of information, and independent journalism”.
“It is sad that Russian authorities are now trying to silence him. The accusations against him are politically motivated,”
Reiss-Andersen stressed. She added that the committee continues to “stand behind the important work” done by Muratov and independent publication Novaya Gazeta.
Dmitry Muratov in New York at the auction where he sold his Nobel Prize medal
The Russian Justice Ministry designated Muratov as a “foreign agent” on Friday. The ministry claims that he participated in creation and promotion of materials authored by “foreign agents” as well as “used foreign forums to disseminate opinions aimed at creating a negative attitude” towards Russia’s foreign and internal policies.
In October 2021, Russian President Vladimir Putin was asked whether Dmitry Muratov would be added to the “foreign agent” list. Putin then replied that it would not happen unless the Novaya Gazeta editor-in-chief “violates Russian laws”, “creating grounds for it”.
In December 2021, Muratov delivered a Nobel Prize winning speech in Oslo where he described journalism as an “antidote to tyranny”.