Afghan Prosecutor presented Women of Courage Award – Celebrate!

 

 

Afghan Prosecutor Presented Women of Courage Award

 

In a ceremony at the State Department on March 8, First Lady Michelle Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Melanne Verveer, Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues presented the International Women of Courage Awards to Afghan Prosecutor Ms. Maria Bashir and nine other strong women around the world who fight and sacrifice so that future generations may benefit from human rights, protections, access to justice and democracy.

 

In a speech, the First Lady Michelle Obama spoke of the vital role each honoree played in promoting positive changes “I want to recognize the extraordinary Women of Courage that we’re here to honor today. These women are amazing. They are trailblazing leaders. We have the first female head of state in Central Asia; the only female Roma Member of Parliament in Hungary; the first female Prosecutor General in Afghanistan. They are activists. They are truth-tellers.”

 

Secretary Clinton echoed the First Lady, saying:”Our honorees deserve our respect and full support. So with that introduction, let me begin. Let me first ask Maria Bashir of Afghanistan to join me. I thank you for that strong response for Maria, because she needs our support and she needs to have her own country understand how important the work she is doing is for them. For defending those who have no legal voice, fighting corruption, and bringing hope to women survivors of violence, disfigurement, and child marriage, we salute you.”

 

In her address, Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues Verveer said “Maria Bashir, Her high profile work and relentless pursuit of justice has come at tremendous personal cost: her house was set on fire, a bomb exploded in her front yard, and her own life and her children’s lives have been threatened in endless Taliban night letters. But despite all these threats, she has waged a determined campaign against crime and corruption and she stands out as a champion of judicial transparency and women’s rights.”

Afghan Prosecutor Ms. Maria Bashir thanked the first lady, Secretary of State, Ambassador Verveer and others for the opportunity “This award is indeed an inspiration for me, my daughter and other Afghan women. Thank you for this kind of recognition that it is very important for women of courage to be determined, for their work to be known around the world. And this is something that I will cherish.”

H.E Eklil Hakimi, Ambassador of Afghanistan attended the award reception “This award recognizes the hard working women of Afghanistan who are the examples of courage”

Ambassador Hakimi gave a reception at the embassy of Afghanistan in honor of the Prosecutor Maria Bashir for her dedication to fighting injustice and the courage to risk her life to work for what she believes in “window of hope for Afghan women”.

 

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For more information, please contact Abduljalil Ghafoory (202) 292 4285 press@embassyofafghanistan.org.

 

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