B'Tselem Wins 2014 Stockholm Human Rights Award

Human-rights advocate gives `a voice to victims' and demands accountability, award's sponsors say.

Members of Breaking the Silence protesting in 2015.
Moti Milrod

B'Tselem, the prominent Israeli human-rights advocate, was awarded the 2014 Stockholm Human Rights Award, the International Legal Assistance Consortium and two major bar associations said.
"B’Tselem has shone international light on human-rights violations in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, providing a voice to victims and calling for accountability," the ILAC, the Swedish Bar Association and the International Bar Association said in a statement.

"It is commendable that B’Tselem has so tirelessly fought to uphold human rights in an environment where its criticism has not always been welcome."

Hagai El-Ad, executive director of B'Tselem, said the group was proud to receive the award "and will continue to do its utmost to justify it."

The award, established in 2009, is presented annually, "to an individual or an institution for outstanding contributions to the rule of law and the promotion and protection of human rights," the award website says.

B'Tselem, formally the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, was founded in 1989. It aims to "change Israeli policy in the occupied territories and to ensure that Israel's government protects the rights of residents there, the group's website says.

B'Tselem is Hebrew for "in the image of" and is also used as a synonym for human dignity, B'Tselem says on its site. The word comes from Genesis 1:27: "And God created humans in his image."

The award will be presented to B'Tselem at a ceremony in Stockholm on November 25.