Book on Syrian whistleblower wins Germany′s Scholl Prize | Books | DW | 21.11.2016
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Book on Syrian whistleblower wins Germany's Scholl Prize

Garance Le Caisne of France has won the Scholl Prize for her book about bravery in the Syrian war, a true story. The award remembers the Scholl siblings, who were executed for their resistance work under the Nazi regime.

"Codename Caesar" by Garance Le Caisne tells the true story of a Syrian whistleblower who copied tens of thousands of photos of people killed by the Assad regime and smuggled them out of the country.

The whistleblower, who went by the name Caesar and spent two years risking his life by smuggling the photos, now lives in safety at an unknown location in northern Europe.

French journalist Garance Le Caisne, who has been reporting on the Middle East since 1990, spent months winning his trust and writing down his story. 

On Monday, she will be presented with the Geschwister Scholl Prize in Munich for her work.

'Incredible bravery'

"People like Caesar and the journalist Garance Le Caisne, who gave him a voice, are indispensible if we want to understand the inner working of a dictatorship and if reparations should be made for the victims one day," explained the jury.

While Le Caisne's book spares the reader the horrifying images of war, it nevertheless serves as a witness to incredible bravery, added the jury.

The Geschwister Scholl Prize is handed out annually to a recent publication that is characterized by independence and fosters civil liberty and moral, intellectual and aesthetic courage. It is endowed with 10,000 euros ($10,600).

The Scholl siblings, Hans and Sophie, were members of the resistance group White Rose during the Nazi regime. They were arrested for passing out protest flyers and were executed in 1943 at the age of 24 and 21, respectively.

kbm/cmk (dpa, kna, epd)

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