Woman of Courage: Michelle Obama honors Eurovision winner Ruslana

Ruslana, the winner of Eurovision 2004, has been awarded the prestigious United States Secretary of State’s Women of Courage award by US First Lady Michelle Obama. The award recognizes Ruslana’s efforts for a more democratic government in Ukraine.

“It’s very important to be … a voice of my country,” she said as she accepted the award yesterday.

In recent months Ruslana has exposed herself to great risk as a leading voice among Ukrainian protestors. She has transcended pop music to become a national heroine, and a symbol of hope for Ukrainians without a voice.

“I think of myself as a volunteer … showing people that we need to be [on Independence Square] because there is no other way,” she said in December. “Europe must be our future.”

In honor of her achievements, let’s relive “Wild Dances”.

Related Links

Ruslana serenades protestors in Kyiv (Washington Post)

Why did Michelle Obama give a Ukrainian pop star the Women of Courage Award? (Washington Post)