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Her voice

“It is surely a matter of outrage that over half a million women die annually from complications related to pregnancy and childbirth. This is nearly half the annual global death toll, and arguably, a direct reflection of the disempowerment of women in social, economic, and political life.” 

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Ms. Pillay served as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights from 2008 to 2014. She was the first non-white woman judge of the High Court of South Africa, and she has also served as a judge of the International Criminal Court and President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

Ms. Pillay is the president of the International Commission Against the Death Penalty. She is also one of the 25 leading figures on the Information and Democracy Commission launched by Reporters Without Borders.

She graduated from the University of Natal with a BA in 1963 and an LLB in 1965. She later attended Harvard Law School, obtaining an LLM in 1982 and a Doctor of Juridical Science degree in 1988. Navi Pillay is the first South African to obtain a doctorate in law from Harvard Law School.