The Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize, or Ludovic Trarieux Award, is an international human rights award given annually to a lawyer for contributions to the defence of human rights.
The Prize was inaugurated in Bordeaux in 1984 by French lawyer Bertrand Favreau, to recognise lawyers of any Bar or nationality whose work furthered the defence of human rights, the supremacy of law, or resistant to intolerance and racism. The prize is awarded after consultation with international NGOs and humanitarian organizations. It commemorates the memory of the French lawyer, Ludovic Trarieux (1840–1904), who in the midst of the Dreyfus Affair, in France, in 1898, founded the Ligue des droits de l’homme (LDH), “Human Rights League”). The first prize was awarded, on 29 March 1985, to South African leader Nelson Mandela, during his imprisonment. His daughter, Zenani Mandela Dlamini, received the award on Mandela’s behalf on 27 April 1985. It was the first award given to Mandela in France, and the first internationally to have been awarded to him by lawyers.
Since 2003 the Prize has been awarded jointly by several institutions: the Human Rights Institute of The Bar of Bordeaux, the Human Rights Institute of the Bar of Paris, the Human Rights Institute of The Bar of Brussels, l’Unione forense per la tutela dei diritti dell’uomo (from Rome), the Bar of Amsterdam, Geneva and Luxemburg, the Berlin Bar Association, the Union Internationale des Avocats (UIA) and the European Bar Human Rights Institute (IDHAE), an organization representing human rights lawyers across Europe.
During the last decades, the Prize was presented by Robert Badinter (1998), Guy Canivet (2002), Dean Spielmann (2006), Emma Bonino (2008), Viviane Reding (2011, etc. The 17th Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize 2012 was awarded to Muharrem Erbey (Turkey, in jail since December 2009, and presented to his wife, Burçin Erbey, in Berlin by German minister of Justice Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger on 30 November 2012.
The 18th Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize 2013 was presented to Vadim Kuramshin, a human rights lawyer similarly imprisoned in Kazakhstan.