The young Syrian Odey al Shufi and his 19 year-old wife, Russian citizen Nadezhda Yepifanova, live in Saint Petersburg – she is studying on the second course at LSU and he is a trainee with friends at a cafe. Or rather, he was a trainee: On the holiday evening of the 7 March 2016 a stranger came to the cafe and stabbed Odey more than ten times with a knife.
The Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) Director Kristian Berg Harpviken’s shortlist for the Nobel Peace Prize is out, with the Russian activist and human rights contender Svetlana Gannushkina on top. Harpviken also finds that nuclear deal negotiators Ernest Moniz and Ali Akbar Salehi; Syrian rescue workers The White Helmets; Edward Snowden; and the Congolese trio Jeanne Nacatche Banyere, Jeannette Kahindo Bindu and Dr. Denis Mukwege are potential candidates for this year’s prize.
A leading figure of the human rights movement in Russia today, Svetlana Gannushkina, has been announced as a Laureate of the 2016 Right Livelihood Award. Gannushkina receives this award ‘for her decades-long commitment promoting human rights and justice for refugees, forced migrants, and different ethnic groups’.
Russia’s contribution to meeting the needs of refugees displaced by the Syrian conflict has been negligible, while its military involvement in the conflict has been significant. Russia should use the upcoming summit meetings on the global refugee crisis to make commitments to share responsibility for refugees in line with its capacity.