Palestinian human rights defender to receive University of Galway award

Palestinian human rights defender to receive University of Galway award

Shawan Jabarin

Palestinian human rights defender Shawan Jabarin is to receive the University of Galway’s 2024 Alumni Award for Law, Public Policy and Society.

The award, sponsored by RDJ, will be formally awarded at the university’s Alumni Awards Gala Banquet, to be held on campus in the Bailey Allen Hall on Friday 10 May 2024.

The awards celebrate outstanding individuals among the university’s 131,000 alumni, recognising their remarkable accomplishments across various fields on both local and global scales.

Among the distinguished honourees to date are President Michael D. Higgins; journalist and broadcaster Seán O’Rourke; broadcaster Gráinne Seoige; Goldman Sachs executive Adrian Jones; former Labour Party leaders Eamon Gilmore and Pat Rabbitte; Court of Appeal judge Máire Whelan; Olympian and World Champion Olive Loughnane; actress and Druid Theatre founder Marie Mullen; and actress Nicola Coughlan.

Mr Jabarin is general director of the Palestinian human rights organisation Al-Haq and a member of Human Rights Watch’s Middle East advisory board. He was Amnesty International’s first Palestinian prisoner of conscience.

He has worked for years to promote human rights in the face of Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories.

From 2005 to 2009, Mr Jabarin was a member of the board of directors of Défense for Children International — Palestine, the national section of the Geneva-based Défense for Children International, and was elected vice-president of the International Federation for Human Rights in May 2013.

He is the recipient of many honours and awards for his human rights advocacy work, and leadership of Al-Haq.

Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, president of the University of Galway, said: “We are honoured to recognise these outstanding alumni who have made significant contributions to their alma mater and to civic society in often challenging times.

“Consistent with our sense of the role of University of Galway in the world and for the world, they are all an important voice in their areas of endeavour.

“Each of them demonstrates the impacts that our graduates can have, and we are proud to be able to recognise and celebrate their achievements in keeping with our values of excellence, openness, respect and sustainability.”

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