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Amal Clooney's struggle for injustice is recognized.
The 42-year-old human rights attorney and wife of George Clooney received the Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award on Thursday as part of the Committee to Protect Journalists' International Press Freedom Awards 2020.
Actress Meryl Streep, who referred to journalists as "essential workers," presented Clooney with the award virtually during the broadcast.
"(Clooney) is an example of the relentless struggle for press freedom and justice," said Streep. "Not only is she something that every journalist needs, what a great lawyer is, but she is also a defender of international laws that allow freedom of expression."
Clooney graciously accepted the award, joking that while they never received the number of awards Streep received, they were both "married to my husband." (Streep played George Clooney in Fantastic Mr. Fox in 2009.)
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Amal Clooney received the Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award from the Committee to Protect Journalists on Thursday.
Clooney said journalism is personal to her because it runs "in the family". Both her mother and father-in-law were journalists.
"It is very important to both of us," she said. "It means it's difficult to say a word at our family dining tables."
Clooney, who has advised several threatened journalists on the defense of human rights, said: "Journalism is the lifeblood of democracy."
"Those who suppress and silence others will always be united and determined to achieve their goal," said Clooney. "Democracy must be constantly defended and the press vigilantly protected."
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The CPJ's 2020 International Press Freedom Awards ceremony was hosted by NBC news anchor Lester Holt. He opened the show and emphasized the importance of protecting journalists more than ever.
"For nearly 40 years (CPJ) has stood side by side with reporters around the world who resisted violence and intimidation just to bring us the news," he said. "Seldom in our lives has the need for accurate and timely information been greater."
Other winners were the Bangladeshi photojournalist Shahidul Alam (arrested while reporting on protests in 2018); Iranian reporter Mohammad Mosaed (sentenced to over four years in prison and banned from journalism); Russian journalist Svetlana Prokopyeva (convicted of "justifying terrorism" for commenting on radio broadcasts); and the Nigerian publisher Dapo Olorunyomi (CEO and editor of the Nigerian Premium Times).
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This article originally appeared in the US TODAY: Amal Clooney Receives the Freedom of the Press Honor; Meryl Streep introduces
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