Friday 21 September 2018

'I'm the luckiest man in the world' - Ibrahim Halawa honours his five sisters at the Tatler Women of the Year Awards

Ibrahim Halawa with his five sisters at the Tatler awards Photo: Paul Sherwood
Ibrahim Halawa with his five sisters at the Tatler awards Photo: Paul Sherwood
Catherine Devine

Catherine Devine

Ibrahim Halawa presented his five sisters with a special recognition award at last night’s Irish Tatler Women of the Year Awards.

His sisters were at the forefront of the campaign to have the 21-year-old released from prison in Egypt.

Earlier this week, the 21-year-old Dubliner returned home after spending four years in jail in Egypt.

In a speech at the Clayton Hotel, Halawa described himself as the “luckiest man in the world”.

“Freedom still takes a lot of adaption to get used to after four years, especially going in as a kid. It affects you mentally but I’m not here to talk about myself,” Halawa said.

"I’m here to talk about what a wonderful job they have done, amazing and hardworking. They’ve postponed their lives, they postponed everything, they postponed college, they didn’t have a proper wedding, they weren’t happy with their first-born child or kids that they had because I, their little brother, was still in prison.

“Of course, they fought and they fought and they fought and I really want to take this opportunity to say that I’m very proud to have sisters like them, I’m the luckiest man in the world.”

Sister Stanislaus Kennedy was honoured with the overall Woman of the Year 2017 Award, while Kathleen Watkins was inducted into The Irish Tatler Hall of Fame.

Speaking about the awards, publisher of the Irish Tatler Norah Casey said:

“We have some amazing women award winners this year including the Halawa sisters who stood steadfast by their brother campaigning tirelessly for his release. When the judging panel choose these three women for a significant achievement award little did we know how momentous the week would be with Ibrahim’s release.

" I started these awards 17 years ago to recognize iconic Irish women in all walks of life but also to shine a spotlight on these amazing role models so young women could believe that they can achieve anything in modern Ireland. When I was growing up I would never have said I wanted to be a business woman, I didn’t even know what a business woman was. Now it’s our biggest category.”

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