Sara Hossain to Receive 2016 International Women of Courage Award

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DHAKA, March 29, 2016 – Sara Hossain has arrived in the United States to receive the U.S. Secretary of State’s International Women of Courage Award. This award annually recognizes women from around the world who have demonstrated exceptional courage and leadership in advocating for peace, justice, human rights, gender equality, and women’s empowerment, often at great personal risk.

Ms. Hossain is a human rights lawyer who has served as a powerful voice for Bangladesh’s most disadvantaged and marginalized citizens, particularly women and girls, in her country’s highest courts of law. A barrister in the Supreme Court of Bangladesh and the Honorary Executive Director of Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust, Ms. Hossain played a key role in drafting her country’s first comprehensive legislation on violence against women, which became law in 2010. Ms. Hossain has brought landmark cases challenging practices such as forced veiling, the use of fatwas to impose degrading punishments on women and girls, and the use of non-medical procedures to judge a woman’s virginity in rape and sexual assault cases. Ms. Hossain’s courage, passion, and integrity have earned her the trust of her clients, and respect from human rights advocates around the world.

Ms. Hossain will receive her award in Washington, D.C. on March 29, 2016, at a ceremony attended by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and 13 other awardees from around the world.

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the Award, for which nearly 100 women have been recognized. The International Women of Courage Award ceremony will be livestreamed at Follow the conversation on Twitter at #WomenofCourage.

In Bangla (PDF 446 KB)