Dmitry Murato sells Nobel Peace Prize for $ 103.5 million to help Ukrainian refugees

Written by Philip WangAmarachi Ori, CNN

Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov, who won the Nobel Peace Prize last yearsold its $ 103.5 million medal at auction on Monday, with the proceeds donated to help Ukrainian refugee children.

Heritage Auctions tweeted that Muratov had auctioned off his #21 Nobel Peace Prize 2021 to a UNICEF refugee fund. It was sold for $ 103,500,000.

All proceeds from the auction, which ended on World Refugee Day, will go to UNICEF’s humanitarian aid for Ukrainian children displaced by the war, according to the auction house.

“Right now, the award is an opportunity for me to share it with people.” Muratov said before the auctioncalling on people around the world to join the cause and contribute.

According to Heritage Auctions’ description of the medal for sale, Olav Nölstad, director of the Norwegian Nobel Institute, backed the auction, calling it a “generous act of humanitarianism”.

The latest figures show that there were more than 7.7 million border crossings from Ukraine, with more than 5 million refugees from Ukraine registered across Europe since the Russian invasion in late February, according to the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR.

In a call for donations, UNICEF said 7.5 million children in Ukraine were severely affected by the ongoing conflict, including family separation, lack of basic supplies and resources, and the daily threat of explosives.

Nobel Peace Prize winners Dmitry Muratov of Russia, right, and Maria Resa of the Philippines received their awards during the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony at Oslo City Hall, Norway, in December 2021.

Nobel Peace Prize winners Dmitry Muratov of Russia, right, and Maria Resa of the Philippines received their awards during the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony at Oslo City Hall, Norway, in December 2021. credit: Alexander Zemlyanichenko / AP

Heritage Auctions continues: “The aim is to use this event to promote awareness of refugee crises and to continue giving long after the June 20 auction.”

Repression of the Russian media

Muratov shared the 2021 Nobel Prize with Philippine-American journalist Maria Resa for what judges described as their “efforts to protect freedom of expression.”

Muratov is the editor-in-chief of the independent Russian news outlet Novaya Gazeta. He “criticizes Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the growing use of military force, both inside and outside Russia,” according to the Nobel Peace Prize-winning organization.

Six of the newspaper’s journalists have been killed, including Anna Politkovskaya, a fierce Kremlin critic who reports human rights abuses in Chechnya.

The Kremlin has tightened its grip on the country’s independent media since invading Ukraine. In March, lawmakers criminalized the dissemination of “false” information that discredited Russia’s armed forces or called for sanctions against the country.

The crackdown forced some outlets to close and allow their journalists to leave the country.

In early March, Novaya Gazeta reported that it had removed articles about the war in Ukraine from its website due to government censorship. Later that month, the newspaper announced that it would suspend publication until the end of the war in Ukraine.

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