The European Parliament has given its top human rights award, the Sakharov prize for Freedom of thought, to Iranian activists Nasrin Sotoudeh and Jafar Panahi.
The assembly’s President Martin Shulz praised the pair for putting their country’s fate before their own.
“I think we should be proud that we can support and encourage people living under such awful circumstances, oppressed by such an awful regime, are rewarded by the Sakharov Prize,” European Parliament President Martin Shulz said.
Sotoudeh, a mother of two, is in solitary confinement in prison for spreading anti government propaganda.
Filmmaker Panahi is facing a six year jail term, charged with conspiring against Tehran.
The pair were chosen ahead of jailed Russian punk band Pussy Riot and Belarus dissident Ales Beliatsky.