The winners of the first edition of The Daphne Caruana Galizia Prize for Journalism are Forbidden Stories, for their work on The Pegasus Project. A team of independent judges hailing from the journalistic and media sectors chose the winner, after a period of submissions earlier this year.
Representative of Forbidden Stories received the award during a ceremony held in the Press Room of the European Parliament in Brussels this afternoon.
Congratulating Forbidden Stories on their success, MEP David Casa said: “Europe needs more Forbidden Stories. The details revealed in both the Pegasus Project as well as the Daphne Project confirm the risks that journalists, opinion leaders, civil society, politicians and other individuals face. This Prize should serve as an eye-opener to all those who threaten, try to silence, and try to murder journalists: the European Parliament will do its utmost to protect journalists and democracies in all the EU Member States.” Quaestor David Casa thanked journalists for their courage and determination to expose what others try to keep secret, for keeping politicians in check, and for ensuring that democracies are kept alive.
The Pegasus Project saw the involvement of more than 80 journalists from 17 media organisations work together to reveal the details of the alleged espionage being made by clients of NSO Group, using the Pegasus software. Victims of the misuse of this spyware include the European Council President Charles Michel, French President Emmanuel Macron, journalists and activists in Hungary, as well as activists in Azerbaijan.
The European Parliament will today award the first-ever Daphne Caruana Galizia Prize for Journalism.
The Prize rewards on a yearly basis outstanding journalism that promotes or defends the core principles and values of the European Union such as human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, rule of law, and human rights. Nominations for the prize were received from all Member States bar one.
It is open to professional journalists and teams of professional journalists of any nationality to submit in-depth pieces that have been published or broadcast by media based in one of the 27 European Union member states. The aim is to support and highlight the importance of professional journalism in safeguarding freedom, equality and opportunity.
An independent jury composed of representatives of the press and civil society from the 27 European member states and representatives of the main European Associations of Journalism were given the responsibility to choose the winning entry.
The award ceremony is being held two days before the date Daphne Caruana Galizia was assassinated.
The award, which carries €20 000 in prize money, demonstrates the European Parliament’s strong support for investigative journalism and the importance of free press.