WASHINGTON: The United States has lauded late Asma Jehangir as a strong advocate of human rights and democracy saying her passing away is a great loss to the world, and she will be missed as a champion in her country, its people, and millions more around the world.

State department spokesperson  Heather Nauert in a statement Tuesday said the US join the Government of Pakistan and others around the world in mourning the passing of a Pakistani human rights and democracy advocate.  The spokespersons said for years Ms. Jahangir courageously defended the rights of those who did not have a voice. She championed the rule of law, democracy, human rights including freedom of religion or belief around the world.

The statement also said, “Her work in Pakistan, including as a founder and chair of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and former president of the Supreme Court Bar Association, and with the United Nations and groups such as the International Crisis Group and the South Asia Forum for Human Rights , made her a global icon in human rights .”

Most recently she served as the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Iran, tirelessly fighting on behalf of the Iranian people as they demanded freedom, dignity, and respect for human rights . As the third UN Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Religion or Belief, she improved the world’s understanding of the plight of religious minorities worldwide through her in-depth research and sustained engagements and fought for the protection of the persecuted.