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The Russian EPDE member organization, the Movement to Protect the Voters' Rights "Golos" was awarded the international "2017 Democracy Defender Award" by 22 OSCE delegations. The Ceremony will be held in the Austrian capital Vienna on 18 January. "Golos" was awarded for "outstanding contribution to the promotion of democracy and human rights."
Yuri Gurman, co-chairman of board of "Golos" will participate at the ceremony.
The award was established in early 2016 on the initiative of Ambassadors of 8 countries, and supported by the delegations of the 18 countries of the OSCE. This year, the initiative was supported by the delegation of ambassadors of 22 countries: Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Great Britain, Canada, Denmark, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mongolia, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, USA, Ukraine, France, Montenegro, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Sweden, Estonia. The award does not include a monetary prize.
The prize supports the outstanding work being done by the representatives of independent civil society. It is designed to draw attention to the problems faced by activists.
It is worth noting that the awarding of "Golos" appears parallel to the visit of the Austria's Foregn Minister Sebastian Kurz to Moscow, who since January 1, 2017 is also OSCE Chairperson-in-Office.