Nobel Peace Prize winner's husband speaks of her dedication to human rights
Overwhelmed with emotion after hearing that his wife, Iranian human rights activist Narges Mohammadi, had won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, her husband Taghi Rahmani fielded media calls from his home in Paris.
He was taking the calls for Mohammadi because she is serving a lengthy prison sentence in Iran's Evin prison.
In an interview with NPR, Rahmani said that although his wife's fight for human rights and ongoing imprisonment are what won her the prize, he's happy for what the honor itself symbolizes.
"The Islamic Republic is very powerful - domestically and regionally - so the people of Iran aren't standing up to a simple state," said Rahmani.
He added, "When you take an oppressive system like this, where it enjoys the support of the minority of people, and you see so much resistance against the government, and the Nobel committee comes and highlights one aspect of this resistance, it makes us feel like our resistance, our protests, are seen by the world."
When asked if he's hopeful his wife will be released soon, Rahmani said that while he wishes for his wife to be freed and for the family to be reunited, he knows that his wife's struggle will be a long one.
"We have suffered through this deprivation. But people, they have their beliefs, their role models - those things are the foundations of their struggles," he said, adding that his wife's role models include Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King Jr. "When you live with these role models, you see a bigger picture, especially in the quest for freedom. And I hope she remains energetically dedicated to the cause."
Rahmani said his wife stands with all other imprisoned human rights activists in Iran -whether they are pro-democracy advocates, or fighting women's rights, human rights and religious freedoms.
"All of these people are different and have different perspectives, but they are united in the demands for freedom. And Narges Mohammadi has always been one of them," said Rahmani.
Rahmani told NPR that his wife often says she hopes her own children will forgive her for choosing the path and for fighting for the freedom of other Iranian children. Especially given that even children and teenagers are targeted by security forces.
"So even if you think you'd love for Narges to be free, but real freedom means freedom for everyone. Not just for a select few while others remain bound...and Narges won't feel free until others are free," said Rahmani.
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