The Belgian Parliament, on Wednesday has nominated Palestinian MP, Marwan Barghouti who has been jailed in Israel since 2002, for the Nobel Peace Prize.
The lawmakers said in a letter addressed to the Prize Committee, "Marwan is an elected representative of the Palestinian nation, and was the first parliamentarian to be arrested… he is a democrat defending human rights, notably women rights."
"He was actively engaged in the promotion of political and religious pluralism, and as such he is an important actor for the future of a region more fragmented than ever. Peace requires the freedom of Marwan Barghouti and of the political prisoners, and more generally the freedom of the Palestinian people living for decades under occupation" the letters added.
"By granting the Nobel Peace Prize to the one who embodies the Palestinian people's struggle for freedom, but also their aspiration to achieve peace, a leader that can unite Palestinians around a political project that clearly includes a two-state solution on 1967 borders, more threatened than ever by colonization and the absence of a political horizon, the Committee for the Nobel Prize would help resurrect the indispensable hope to go out of the current impasse," the Belgian lawmakers say.
Lawyer Fadwa Barghouti, Marwan's wife who runs an international campaign to release her husband said in a telephone interview with Anadolu News Agency "this is the first nomination by a European Parliament for Marwan."
Barghouti said the Argentine Adolfo Perez Esquivel who won the prize in 1980 has also nominated Marwan for the award on 4 March.
The Israeli army arrested Marwan in 2002. He was sentenced by an Israeli court to five life sentences on charges carrying terrorist attacks against Israeli targets during the second Intifada.