Khadija Ismayilova and Benjamin Best are awarded the “Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media” 2020
Leipzig, 25 June 2020 – Azerbaijani investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova and German journalist and filmmaker Benjamin Best have been awarded this year’s “Prize for Freedom and Future of the Media” of the Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig. The prize money is 10,000 euros each. The prize is awarded to media professionals who strive for media freedom and independent reporting in a particularly outstanding manner and are often risk their own well-being.
“For years, Azerbaijan has been one of the countries where freedom of the press is at greatest risk. Under these conditions, Khadija Ismayilova works as an internationally known and influential investigative journalist. Corruption and nepotism in her home country are her subjects, which is why she is exposed to numerous hostilities. As one of the complainants before the German Federal Constitutional Court against the interception practice of the Federal Intelligence Service abroad, she recently showed that we in Germany too can make our contributions to press freedom worldwide. That is why she is receiving our Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media this year”, said Stephan Seeger, Managing Director of Media Foundation on the jury’s decision.
“Benjamin Best is one of the outstanding protagonists in German sports journalism, whose work radiates worldwide. With both economic and sporting expertise, he conscientiously and deeply looks behind the glittering backdrops of the global sports world, for example on the subject of betting fraud and human rights violations in the context of major sporting events. In the language of a sports reporter one might say: Best goes to where it hurts. This makes him extremely worthy of our prize”, Seeger continues.
The “Prize for Freedom and Future of the Media” is usually awarded on 8 October in Leipzig – on the eve of the anniversary of the demonstrations against the GDR regime on 9 October 1989, which are not only decisive for Leipzig. It will be announced in good time in which kind and form this year’s award ceremony will take place.