KUALA LUMPUR, March 4 — Susanna Liew is among honorees who will receive the International Women of Courage award from US First Lady Melania Trump in Washington today.
According to a statement from the US embassy here, the wife of missing pastor Raymond Koh is being honoured for her tireless pursuit of justice and for pushing those responsible for his abduction to be punished.
The event will be held in the US capital, with US State Secretary Michael Pompeo hosting while Trump is scheduled to deliver remarks recognising the women.
Aside from Liew, others being honoured this year include Zarifa Ghafari (Afghanistan), Lucy Kocharyan (Armenia), Shahla Humbatova (Azerbaijan), Ximena Galarza (Bolivia), Claire Ouedraogo (Burkina Faso), Sayragul Sauytbay (China), Amaya Coppens (Nicaragua), Jalila Haider (Pakistan), Amina Khoulani (Syria), Yasmin al Qadhi (Yemen), and Dr Rita Nyampinga (Zimbabwe).
The IWOC 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, often at great personal risk and sacrifice.
Koh was taken in broad daylight in 2017 by a team of abductors in several vehicles and has never been seen again since; the incident was captured by a nearby surveillance camera.
His abduction as well as that of activist Amri Che Mat became the subject of a public inquiry by the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam), which concluded that the Special Branch was involved in Koh’s abduction and labelled it an “enforced disappearance.”
Liew sued the police and the Malaysian government on February 12 over his abduction, just a day before the expiry of the three-year limitation period.