Journalists Maria Ressa, from the Philippines, and Russian Dmitry Muratov have won the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.

"Ms Ressa and Mr Muratov are receiving the Peace Prize for their courageous fight for freedom of expression in the Philippines and Russia," Chairwoman Berit Reiss-Andersen of the Norwegian Nobel Committee told a news conference.

"At the same time, they are representatives of all journalists who stand up for this ideal in a world in which democracy and freedom of the press face increasingly adverse conditions," she added.

The Nobel Peace Prize will be presented on 10 December, the anniversary of the death of Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel, who founded the awards in his 1895 will.

The committee said: "Free, independent and fact-based journalism serves to protect against abuse of power, lies and war propaganda.

"The Norwegian Nobel Committee is convinced that freedom of expression and freedom of information help to ensure an informed public.

"These rights are crucial prerequisites for democracy and protect against war and conflict.

"The award of the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize to Maria Ressa and Dmitry Muratov is intended to underscore the importance of protecting and defending these fundamental rights."

Ms Ressa, 58, said she was stunned by the news.

"I am in shock," she told a live broadcast by Rappler, a digital media company for investigative journalism that she co-founded.

Mr Muratov dedicated his award to the paper's six journalists and contributors killed since 2000.

"I can't take credit for this. This is Novaya Gazeta's," Mr Muratov said.

He said the award was for people who "died defending the right of people to freedom of speech".

Meanwhile, the Kremlin congratulated Mr Muratov, 59, despite the fact that his Novaya Gazeta newspaper has often criticised the Russian authorities.

"We can congratulate Dmitry Muratov," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

"He persistently works in accordance with his own ideals, he is devoted to them, he is talented, he is brave," said Mr Peskov.

The UN human rights office congratulated the winners on their success, saying it was "recognition of the importance of the work of journalists in the most difficult circumstances".

"Throughout the years we've seen an increase in attacks in journalists during the Covid lockdown as well," spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani told journalists at a UN briefing in Geneva.

"I think I'd speak for the High Commissioner (Michelle Bachelet) when I say congratulations to all journalists out there who are doing their job to keep us informed and to amplify the voices of victims everywhere," she added.