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Zannah Mustaph Gets United Nations’ Peace Prize

Published on September 19, 2017
Zannah Mustaph was awarded one of the United Nations’ top prizes.
He was given the annual Nansen Refugee award for his “crucial mediating” role.

 Zannah Mustaph Gets United Nations’ Peace Prize
  • He is a Nigerian lawyer who helped secure the release of more than 100 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram
  • He set up The Future Prowess Islamic Foundation School 10 years ago.
  • This foundation is a lifeline for children in conflict-riven and impoverished northeast Nigeria
  • Mustaph is a well-known figure in northeast Nigeria having previously represented the family of Mohammed Yusuf, the founder of Boko Haram who died in police custody in 2009.

About Boko Haram

  • It is an Islamic extremist terrorist group based in northeastern Nigeria, also active in Chad, Niger and northern Cameroon
  • The name "Boko Haram" is usually translated as "Western education is forbidden". 
  • was founded as a Sunni Islamic fundamentalist sect, influenced by the Wahhabi movement, advocating a strict form of Sharia law. It developed into a Salafist-jihadi group in 2009. 
  • Mohammed Yusuf founded the sect that became known as Boko Haram in 2002 in Maiduguri, the capital of the north-eastern state of Borno. He established a religious complex and school that attracted poor Muslim families from across Nigeria and neighbouring countries. The center had the political goal of creating an Islamic state, and became a recruiting ground for jihadis.

About UNHCR Nansen Refugee Award

  • It is awarded annually by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to an individual, group, or organization in recognition of outstanding service to the cause of refugees, displaced or stateless people. 
  • It was established in 1954.
  • The award is named after the intrepid Norwegian polar explorer, statesman and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Fridtjof Nansen. As the first High Commissioner for Refugees at the League of Nations, Nansen's achievements made significant strides in giving a voice to the forcibly displaced. UNHCR's Nansen Refugee Award consists of a commemorative medal, the Nansen Medal, and a 100.000 USD monetary prize
  • Each year, the UNHCR Nansen Refugee Award is presented at a dignified ceremony in Geneva, Switzerland, the "world's humanitarian capital"
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