The 2020 Olof Palme Prize awarded to the international civil rights movement Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation
Patrisse Cullors, co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement (Photo by Giovanni Solis)

2 February 2021

The 2020 Olof Palme Prize is awarded to the international civil rights movement Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation, with roots in the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement founded by Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tometi in 2013. Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation is working for peaceful civil disobedience against police brutality and racial violence all over the world.

The Olof Palme Memorial Fund says in its motivation that the “BLM movement at large has in a unique way exposed the hardship, pain, and wrath of the African-American minority at not being valued equal to people of a different colour. In the United States alone, estimated twenty million people have taken part in Black Lives Matter protests, and millions more have made their voices heard all over the world. This illustrates that racism and racist violence is not just a problem in American society.”

– “I am just very grateful, we have spent the last seven and a half years fighting for justice for black people, not just in the USA but around the world,” says Patrisse Cullors to Swedish Public Service Broadcaster SVT.
 
Oliver Tambo and Olof Palme
 

“It is completely right that this year’s Olof Palme’s Prize goes to Black Lives Matter. The friendship and shared values between Olof Palme and Oliver Tambo were a fundamental part in the creation of the strong resistance to the South African apartheid regime. I remember when I heard them both speak at a large gathering in Stockholm, only days before Olof Palme was assassinated in February 1986. The fight for everyone’s equal rights must today be carried on with the same conviction and determination as that of Olof Palme and Oliver Tambo,” says Sweden’s Ambassador to South Africa Mr Håkan Juholt.

The Olof Palme Memorial Fund for International Understanding and Common Security was established by Olof Palme’s family and by the Social Democratic Party to honour his memory. The fund awards an annual 100 000 USD Olof Palme Prize for an outstanding achievement in the spirit of Olof Palme. It also provides scholarships and grants to
• give opportunities to young people for international exchange and for studies of peace and disarmament
• support work against racism and xenophobia
• foster in other ways work for international understanding and common security.

A digital award ceremony was broadcast on www.palmefonden.se on Saturday January 30, 2021.

Embassy of Sweden in South Africa