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State Dept. awards Palestinian woman

Condoleezza Rice conferred an award for courage on a Palestinian woman who advocates for women’s rights.

Nibal Thawabteh, the first woman elected to the council of Beit Fajjar, a conservative village near Bethlehem, was recognized with the International Woman of Courage Award.

Thawabteh addresses issues such as honor killings and polygamy in a magazine she founded and on television, the State Department said in a news release Monday announcing the awardees.

She was among eight women cited by Rice, the U.S. secretary of state. It is the second year the State Department has given the courage award, which is timed for International Women’s Day.

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