Egyptian activist Hossam Bahgat receives HRW award

Hossam Bahgat

CAIRO: An Egyptian activist has been awarded the Alison Des Forges Award for Extraordinary activism by Human Rights Watch (HRW) in recognition of his work defending civil rights and personal freedoms in Egypt.

HRW describes Hossam Bahgat, director of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), as a “leading voice against the prosecution and harassment of individuals based on their religious beliefs or private sexual conduct.”

Established in 2002, EIPR works on the right to privacy, health, violence and bodily integrity.

The Cairo-based NGO has won a number of high-profile cases, including a case against the interior ministry that allowed Egyptian Baha’i citizens to leave the religious denomination field on identification documents blank rather than being forced to incorrectly identify themselves as Muslim, Christian or Jewish.

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