Brazil's former President Dilma Rousseff will receive the prestigious honors in Argentina Thursday awarded by a university and a prominent human rights organization to recognize her commitment to and legacy of defending social equality.
The former Brazilian leader, ousted last year in a parliamentary coup, will receive the Rodolfo Walsh award from the Faculty of Journalism and Social Communication of the University of La Plata "for her example of political-academic trajectory, militant commitment, and coherence in principles and action," said the university located in Buenos Aires.
The award, named after the Argentine journalist and intellectual, who was also a victim of the military dictatorship, has been previously given to the former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, former Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa, Bolivian President Evo Morales and his Vice President Alvaro Garcia Linera.
During her visit, Rousseff — who was tortured under Brazil's military dictatorship for being an opponent of the regime — will also receive the symbolic white handkerchief, the highest distinction awarded by the Mothers of Plaza de Mayo as an icon of the organization's struggle for justice for those disappeared and murdered during the country's last dictatorship.
"We are very happy to deliver the handkerchief to Dilma, especially at this time, a handkerchief embroidered by one of our mothers, letter by letter, which represents the embrace of our children," said the president of the association, Hebe de Bonafini.
De Bonafini said her organization will give the distinction to Rousseff since they consider her one of their own, "because after enduring prison, torture and almost death, she became president and is a great woman."
Last December, on her most recent visit to Buenos Aires, Rousseff was also honored with several awards including the Honorary Doctorate degree from the Jose C. Paz University, and participated in several events at the Metropolitan University for Education and Work.