The Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID) has bestowed its 2014 Muslim Democrat of the Year Award to the Nahdha Bloc in the Tunisian National Constituent Assembly (NCA).
During its 15th Annual Conference, CSID president Dr. Radwan Masmoudi announced to the Nahdha Bloc leader, Mr. Sahbi Atig, that the prize was awarded “in recognition of your role in building democracy and preserving it in the face of hardship, for helping write a progressive, democratic, and consensual constitution, and for opening a window into a century of reason, freedom, human rights, and democracy in Tunisia and in the Arab World.”
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Dr. William Lawrence, the conference chair added that “for more than a decade, CSID has recognized exceptional efforts made in advancing freedom, democracy, and human rights in the Muslim world. We believe that the Nahdha Bloc has succeeded with its partners in achieving a consensus that paved the way to ratifying a remarkable and enlightened constitution for all Tunisians.”
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The ceremony was attended by many dignitaries including Mr. Aly Larayedh, former Prime Minister, Mr. Nejib Chebbi, leader of Joumhouri Party, and William Roebuck, U.S Deputy Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs.
In a statement Mr. Atig said “I wish to thank the Center for recognizing our efforts in reaching an agreement along with many other deserving partners within the NCA. We are committed to this path that our people have chosen, and we hope that our experience here in Tunisia will serve as a model to other countries.”
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Previous recipients of the Award include Anwar Ibrahim of Malaysia, Abdol Karim Soroush of Iran, Saadeddine Ibrahim of Egypt, Saadeddine Othmani of Morocco, Ahmed Shaheed of the Maldives, and Amina Rasul of the Philippines.
CSID is a Washington based nonprofit organization that focuses on promoting freedom, democracy and good governance in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Muslim world.