Razan Zaitouneh (born 29 April 1977) is a prominent human rights lawyer, activist, and journalist in Syria. Razan has dedicated her life to defending political prisoners, documenting crimes against humanity, and helping others free themselves from oppression and starvation. She became a lawyer to defend the ideals she valued most – justice, freedom, and truth.
Razan’s involvement in human rights advocacy began early in her career, leading to the government banning her from leaving the country in 2002.
In 2005, Razan founded the Syrian Human Rights Information Link (SHRIL), Syria’s first public documentation resource for human rights violations. SHRIL unveiled numerous injustices faced by Syrians, putting the government under the microscope for the rest of the world to see.
Razan is an award-winning defender whose work will always be remembered. She was one of three finalists for the 2016 Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders, and was awarded the 2011 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought and the 2011 Anna Politkovskaya Award of Reach All Women in War (RAW in WAR), 2013 was granted the International Women of Courage Award, for her human rights work.