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US honours Jalila Haider with International Women of Courage Award

The United States Department of State announced on Wednesday the recipients of the International Women of Courage Award for the year 2020 to honor twelve women across the world. Pakistani human rights activist and lawyer Jalila Haider is also on the list.

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The award recognises women around the globe who have demonstrated exceptional courage and leadership in advocating for peace, justice, human rights, gender equality, and women’s empowerment at great personal risk.

The department said that Haider was the “Iron Lady” of Balochistan, who had founded a non-profit to lift local communities by strengthening opportunities for vulnerable women and children. “She has fought against violence against women in public spaces,” the statement added.

Who is Jalila Haider?

Jalila Haider is a rights lawyer free legal who renders her legal services free of cost to women in poverty. In Oct, 2019, Haider was named among the 100 most influential women of 2019 by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).

Read more: Pakistani culture vs Women empowerment: Should Aurat March be held?

In addition to it,  being a vocal activist for the rights of women, she is also the founder of We the Humans, a non-profit organisation working with local communities to provide opportunities for vulnerable women. She has been fighting for the rights of women of deprived areas in Balochistan.

Taking to social networking platform Twitter, Haider had expressed profound joy at being named in the list, saying she was honored by the mention.

Jalila was barred from traveling abroad

Haider was earlier this year barred from boarding a flight to the United Kingdom by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) at Lahore airport. According to sources, the rights lawyer was detained at the airport on Jan 20, as she arrived to catch her flight. Haider had been scheduled to board a plane to London where she was due to attend a conference related to her work. However, after the condemnation on travel ban of Jalila, she was given permission for travel. Due to her services for women of the deprived areas, she has been honored with International Women of Courage Awar.

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