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The best understanding of a martyr is one who chooses to suffer, to die rather than renounce their principles. A martyr is also one who has given themselves up as a witness… The essence of Christianity is to bear witness to what Jesus was always on about; forgiveness, love, reconciliation and the intrinsic equality of all people.
Within days of the announcement of a record 205 nominations for 2009’s Nobel Peace Prize, [one of several prizes endowed by Swedish industrialist and dynamite inventor Alfred Nobel] perpetual nominee Mordechai Vanunu declined the honor in a letter to the Nobel Peace Prize Committee in Oslo:
“I am asking the committee to remove my name from the nominations…I cannot be part of a list of laureates that includes Simon Peres…Peres established and developed the atomic weapon program in Dimona in Israel…Peres was the man who ordered [my] kidnapping…he continues to oppose my freedom and release…WHAT I WANT IS FREEDOM AND ONLY FREEDOM….FREEDOM AND ONLY FREEDOM I NEED NOW.”