As Gaza burns, it becomes all too easy to overlook the various human rights abuses still unfolding around the region.
Once such case is that of the Nobel Peace Prize winner, Iranian lawyer, human rights activist and founder of Children’s Rights Support Association in Iran, Shirin Ebadi.
Last week protesters spray-painted slogans on Ebadi’s home, chanted death threats and shouted accusations that she supports Israel’s Gaza offensive.
The demonstration was the third time in 11 days that Iranian authorities or hardline groups had targeted the human rights lawyer.
In December police raided her private law office seizing computers and her clients’ confidential documents, while the authorities closed her human rights center.
The actions have drawn criticism from the U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who has called on Iranian authorities to take immediate measures to prevent any further harassment and to ensure Ebadi’s safety.
While the motivation for the harassment has been allegedly in the name of security, it is more likely a ruse to destabilise Ebadi’s ongoing work in the field of gender equality, democracy, and human rights.
Anyone who has read Ebadi’s accounts will recall that this is no different to earlier instances of unjust harassment – what remains remarkable is her plucky defiance and indefatigable will to continue.