Contact: Brandon Vogel
Department of Media Services

January 30, 2008


Lawyers and Judges of PakistanReceive Award for Distinction in International Affairs

NEW YORK - The Lawyers and Judges of Pakistan, as represented by Aitzaz Ahsan in absentia,have been selected to receive the 2008 Award for Distinction in International Affairs from the New York State Bar Association.

The award, sponsored by the Association's International Law and Practice Section, will be presented on Wednesday, January 30 during a luncheon at the Marriott Marquis in Manhattan, as part of the State Bar's annual meeting.

"The Lawyers and Judges of Pakistanhave shown the world their dedication to achieving democracy in their country. Ahsan's tireless advocacy demonstrates how a lawyer can affect social change and help the greater good," said Section Chair Oliver J. Armas of New York City(Thacher Proffitt & Wood LLP). "It is an honor to recognize Ahsan and the Lawyers and Judges of Pakistanfor their efforts."

Ahsan is a key figure in Pakistan's fight for democracy. He is the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan and the founder and vice-president of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.

Ahsan served as principal counsel for removed Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and successfully led the protest movement to restore him to his position. An opponent of martial law and the Musharraf government, Ahsan has been imprisoned several times in 2007 for his beliefs. Following the assassination of Benazir Bhutto, Ahsan has been widely mentioned as the future leader of the Pakistan Peoples Party.

The 74,000-member New York State Bar Association is the official statewide organization of lawyers in New Yorkand the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation.