Jalila Haider, a human rights activist from Balochistan, will receive the Inter­national Women of Courage award from US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo on Wednesday, said an official announcement.

The US State Depart­ment’s spokesperson’s office identified Ms Haider as “the Iron Lady of Balochistan,” who founded “We the Humans – Pakistan”, a non-profit organisation to lift local communities by strengthening opportunities for vulnerable women and children.

Who is Jalila Haider?

She specializes in defending women’s rights and provides free counselling and legal services to poverty-affected women. The first female attorney of her Hazara community, Ms Haider led a peaceful hunger strike to recognise the right to life for the Hazaras following a series of targeted attacks. She has taken up the cause of many other vulnerable communities. As Balochistan’s President of the Women Democratic Front and Balochistan’s bran­­ch of the Aurat (Wo­man’s) March, “she fought against violence against women in public spaces, at work, and at home,” said her brief introduction released by the State Department.

Also read: Activist Jalila Haider illegally detained from leaving Pakistan


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