Syrian journalist Kholoud Waleed was awarded on Wednesday the "Anna Politkovskaya" annual award, by the human rights organization "RAW in WAR" [Reach All Women in WAR], for her courageous work in transmitting the reality of what is happening in Syria.
In an exclusive statement to Rozana, Waleed says that she dedicates this award to "every Syrian woman working until the moment; to my magazine Inab Baladi [Grapes of My Country]; as well as my friends—whether detained or killed."
She adds that "the prize increases my responsibilities as a journalist, to follow up and deliver the truth, no matter how harsh the conditions." She points out that, through her journalistic career, she focused on the stories of ordinary people; saying: "This life is a story... The smaller stories are neither being told nor being heard... People have had enough of news of killings, beatings, and death."
Waleed says that her journalist friends, both male and female, have been subjected to arrest and death by the Syrian regime; in addition to a variety of threats from other groups, non-system. They were accused of having published reports inimical to these parties' programs and their agendas. She notes that "there are many warring [parties], and it is imperative to talk about all the violations of all parties." This attitude has meant putting her at risk of arrest—especially after the arrest of her friends; she was, thus, forced to leave Syria in February 2013.
She expresses the view that "all journalists—male and female—in Syria, need to be one hand. In the event that one of them is arrested or subjected to any violation; such solidarity would be a shield that protects and alleviates the risk to journalists inside [Syria]."
At the end of her interview with Rozana, Kholoud Waleed refers to the initial objectives and perspectives of the Revolution of freedom and dignity. She reiterates that "despite all the current bad situation in Syria, and in spite of all the evil forces that have come together to face the Syrian Revolution; Syrians must not forget that, in the onset of their Revolution in 2011, they called for change and freedom."
Kholoud Waleed (31 years), is a journalist and activist from the city of Darayya [in the Damascus countryside]; is one of the founders of the newspaper Inab Baladi and a member of its editorial board. She studied English literature and earned a master's degree in translation from the University of Damascus in 2010.
It is to be noted that the organization "RAW in WAR" which annually grants the "Anna Politkovskaya" award, is a non-governmental organization that supports human rights defenders, women, and victims of war and conflicts all over the world.