Tawakkol Karman

Nobel Peace Laureate 2011

Region(s): Global, Middle East
Country of focus: Yemen

Tawakkol Karman (@TawakkolKarman) was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 in recognition of her work in nonviolent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peacebuilding work in Yemen. Upon being awarded the prize, Tawakkol became the first Yemeni, the first Arab woman, and the second Muslim woman to win a Nobel Peace Prize. In 2005, she founded the organization Women Journalists Without Chains, (WJWC) which advocates for rights and freedoms and provides media skills to journalists. The organization produces regular reports on human rights abuses in Yemen, documenting attacks and unfair sentences against newspapers and writers. In 2007, Tawakkol began organizing weekly protests in Yemen’s capitol, Sana’a, targeting systemic government repression and calling for inquiries into corruption and other forms of social and legal injustice. Tawakkol’s weekly protests continued until 2011, when she redirected protesters to support the Arab Spring. Since receiving the award, Tawakkol has continued to support female journalists and rally Yemenis against government corruption and injustice.