This year, Belarusian rights activist Ales Bialiatski, the Russian group Memorial and the Ukrainian organisation Center for Civil Liberties have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
All these three laureates represent civil society in their home countries. For many years, they have promoted the right to criticise power and protect the fundamental rights of citizens.
"They have made an outstanding effort to document war crimes, human rights abuses and the abuse of power. Together they demonstrate the significance of civil society for peace and democracy," the Norwegian Nobel Committee said in its citation.