Ukraine dominates shortlist for EU human rights prize

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks during a video address to the European Council, Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022 in Strasbourg, eastern France. Ukraine’s capital region was struck by Iranian-made kamikaze drones early Thursday, officials said, sending rescue workers rushing to the scene as residents awoke to air raid sirens for the fourth consecutive morning following Russia’s major assault across the country earlier this week. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)

BRUSSELS (AP) — Ukrainian entries dominated Thursday’s shortlist to win to European Union’s top human rights prize.

The Christian Democrat, Socialist and Liberal groups, the three biggest within the European parliament, all nominated the people of Ukraine as their choice to win the Sakharov Prize this year for their resistance to the Russian invasion.

On top of that, the conservative ECR group specifically named Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy as their favorite for his endurance and defense of his people.

The overwhelming support for the Ukraine cause reduced other nominees to outsiders, including Brazil environmental activist Sonia Guajajara and imprisoned WikiLeaks activist Julian Assange.

If Ukraine wins, it would be the second straight year that the EU would send a political message to the Kremlin with the Sakharov Prize, after imprisoned opposition leader Alexei Navalny won it last year.

The winner of the prize will be announced Wednesday and the 50,000-euro prize will be awarded during the Dec. 14 session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France.

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