Mustafa Dzhemilev, the leader of the Crimean Tatar people and a member of the Ukrainian parliament, was awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine on his 80th birthday on Nov. 13, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced on Facebook.
"A resolute, dignified, and brave individual. A lifetime devoted to defending the freedom of peoples," Zelenskyy wrote.
The president extended birthday wishes to Dzhemilev and expressed gratitude for defending the freedom of Ukraine and the Crimean Tatar people. He awarded him the Order of the Golden Star.
"As I approach the end of my life's journey, I hold one final dream on this earth - to return to my homeland and be buried on my land," Dzhemilev said upon receiving the award.
Mustafa Dzhemilev is the leader of the Crimean Tatar national movement, the chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people (from 1991 to 2013), and a member of the Ukrainian parliament. He endured over 15 years in Soviet prisons and camps for his political convictions and underwent a 303-day hunger strike in protest.
Dzhemilev is the winner of the international Orlyk Prize for the democratization of Ukrainian society. He has been awarded the Nansen Medal, the Order of Prince Yaroslav the Wise of the V and IV degrees. Additionally, he was nominated for the Sakharov Prize in 2016 and thrice for the Nobel Peace Prize (in 2009, 2011, and 2022).
Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine