In honor of her 43rd birthday, here are 3 times Amal Clooney proved that she is a force to be reckoned with.
Today, Amal Clooney turns 43-years-old! While she may have shot into the spotlight after marrying actor George Clooney, the internationally acclaimed human rights lawyer has become a global sensation in her own right. From attending Oxford University to fighting for justice on an international scale, Amal has proven that she is way more than just a Hollywood wife. In honor of her birthday, here are 3 times Amal Clooney was a total badass lawyer!
She fought for free speech
In December 2013, Amal represented Al Jazeera journalists Mohamed Fahmy, Baher Mohamed, and Peter Greste who were arrested in Egypt for allegedly reporting false information and cooperating with the Muslim Brotherhood. The case, which initially sentenced the three men to seven to ten years in prison, received major international criticism.
In an August 2015 retrial, the three received a reduced sentence of 3 years in prison. Clooney stated, “The verdict today sends a very dangerous message in Egypt. It sends a message that journalists can be locked up for simply doing their job, for telling the truth and reporting the news. And it sends a dangerous message that there are judges in Egypt who will allow their courts to become instruments of political repression and propaganda.”
Fortunately, in February 2015, Greste was released on a presidential decree and several months later in September, his two colleagues were freed on a pardon by Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
She is taking on ISIS
Amal Clooney is also the first to ever attempt to prosecute ISIS for international crimes of genocide. Since 2014, ISIS has been leading a genocide against the Yazidis, a religious minority living in Iraq. In particular, Yazidi girls and women have been sold into slavery and suffered greatly at the hands of their captors.
In 2016, Clooney announced that she will be representing former ISIS sex slave Nadia Murad once the case is brought to the International Criminal Court. She stated, “We know that thousands of Yazidi civilians have been killed and that thousands of Yazidi women have been enslaved. We know that systematic rapes have taken place, and that they are still taking place, and yet no one is being held to account.”
Clooney has been trying to convince the United Nations Security Council to take on the case since she began representing Murad.
While necessary, her work does come with its challenges. In 2019, George Clooney shared with The Hollywood Reporter, “My wife is taking the first case against ISIS to court, so we have plenty of issues — real, proper security issues — that we have to deal with on a fairly daily basis. We don’t really want our kids to be targets, so we have to pay attention to that. But, you know, we also live our lives. We don’t hide in corners.”
She represents former prime ministers
Amal represented former Ukraine prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who was sentenced to 7 years in prison in 2011 on abuse of power charges. Many considered it to be a politically-motivated prosecution.
Clooney appeared in front of the European Court of Human Rights and Tymoshenko was released in 2014.
The high-powered barrister is also a humanitarian, co-founding the Clooney Foundation for Justice in 2016. According to its website, the organization “advocates for justice through accountability for human rights abuses around the world.”
We want to thank Amal Clooney for making the world a better place and we wish her a very happy birthday!