At the 8th award ceremony on September 29th 1995, the awards were again divided between human rights prizes and recognition of special services. The human rights prizes went to the Kurdish-Turkish opposition politician Leyla Zana, the Palestinian biologist and activist Sumaya Farhat Naser, Russian biologist and human rights expert Sergej Adamowitsch Kowaljow, as well as the Nigerian writer and civil rights activist Kenule Beeson Saro-Wiwa, known internationally as Ken Saro-Wiwa. Both Leyla Zana and Ken Saro-Wiwa were imprisoned at the time of the award ceremony. In spite of widespread international protest, Ken Saro-Wiwa was hanged on November 10th 1995 in Port Harcourt at the orders of the Nigerian dictator General Sani Abacha.
Farhat Naser is one of the most outspoken advocates for women's rights and issues in Palestine. In this context, she has always advocated a peaceful and just settlement between Israel and Palestine
The prizes for recognition of special services all went to Austrian people and institutions. The Committee for Defence of Human Rights in Iran, the World University Service in Graz, the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Human Rights, the homeless shelter " Die Gruft", the Poysdorf refugee center, and Father August Janisch received prizes.
The recognition prizes were all awarded to individuals and institutions from Austria. Prizes went to the Committee for the Defense of Human Rights in Iran, the World University Service in Graz, the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Human Rights, the homeless shelter “Die Gruft”, the Poysdorf refugee aid and Father August Janisch.
A few days after the award of the prize, in October of 1995, Maria Loley, the head of the Poysdorf Refugee Center was injured in a parcel bomb attack.
Johannes Rau, who later became President of Germany, gave the keynote speech at the award ceremony.