Syrian Kurdish female journalist wins David Burke Award  

QAMISHLI, Syria (North Press) – A Kurdish female journalist from Afrin region in northwestern Syria won on Friday the 23rd annual David Burke Distinguished Journalism Awards.

Newroz Rasho, who has been working for the Voice of America (VOA) as a contributor for the Kurdish Service for seven years, was awarded for her courageous reporting from northern Syria, specifically from Shahba Region in Aleppo northern countryside where Afrin IDPs have been taking shelter since 2018.  

In an exclusive statement to North Press, Rasho said she was inspired by the courage of Afrin women who are subjected to human rights violations in Afrin under the Turkish occupation, and women in the IDP camps in Shahba Region and their endurance of the harshness of life. 

The award was presented by the U.S. Agency for Global Media (USAGM) for Rasho’s dedication to providing reliable and accurate news while navigating life in the IDP camps in Shahba Region.

Shahba Region is an area consists of about 40 villages and five camps that have been populated by the Kurds of Afrin since 2018 after Turkey occupied Afrin following the so-called Olive Branch military operation that resulted in the displacement of about 300,000 of Kurds.

During the Turkish invasion of Afrin, Rasho experienced many heartbreaking and painful emotions and thoughts, the hardest of which was the killing of her father in a Turkish air strike. This also has given her the power to convey “the silenced voices of Afrin IDPs” to the world, according to the journalist. 

The David Burke Distinguished Journalism Awards recognize the courage, integrity, and professionalism of journalists from each of the USAGM networks. The awards are named after the founding chairman, David Burke.  

She added that she was grateful for the trust of people who shared their stories and suffering with her, although such stories posed a threat to their lives and their relatives who remained in Afrin, but they decided to reveal them to the press.

Newroz Rasho indicated that she dedicated her award “to the children, women and olive trees of Afrin whose stories she was unable to share and who were subjected to violations.”

By Jwan Shekaki