The annual awards recognise ‘women journalists who have shown extraordinary strength of character and integrity while reporting the news under dangerous or difficult circumstances”.
The winners were announced in the press release:
Reeyot Alemu, 31, an Ethiopian columnist currently imprisoned on charges of terrorism after writing critiques of her country’s government; Asmaa al-Ghoul, 30, a Palestinian blogger and freelance writer who has received death threats for her commentary on the culture and politics of Gaza; Khadija Ismayilova, 35, a radio reporter from Azerbaijan who was blackmailed and threatened after her investigation into charges of malfeasance against members of the Azerbaijani president’s family. These are the International Women’s Media Foundation’s 2012 Courage in Journalism Award winners.
‘I am humbled to work in the same profession as these heroic women,’said Katty Kay, co-chair of the IWMF. ‘It is my honor to be involved with the IWMF as it recognizes their dedication and bravery. It is journalists like Reeyot, Asmaa and Khadija who set an example for all of us.”
The IWMF’s 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to Zubeida Mustafa, 70, a Pakistani journalist who has worked for three decades at Dawn, one her country’s oldest and most widely circulated English-language newspapers.
Theodore Boutrous Jr, IWMF co-chair, said ‘A free and independent press is vital to freedom and liberty. The IWMF believes that no press is truly fee if women do not share an equal voice. As the first woman to work at Dawn, Zubeida blazed a trail for women journalists in Pakistan, changing hiring policies and mentoring young women. She showed that women journalists can cover serious topics such as healthcare and economic inequality.”
he 2012 awards will be presented during ceremonies in New York on October 24 and in Los Angeles on October 29.
‘The IWMF is grateful to the Bank of America, National Presenting Sponsor of the Courage in Journalism Awards for the seventh year and steadfast supporter of heroic women journalists around the world,’said Elisa Lees Munoz, Acting Executive Director of the IWMF.