March 25, 2024 — Hebrew University of Jerusalem Professor Dr. Cochav Elkayam-Levy has been awarded the prestigious Israel Prize, the State’s highest honor, in the field of Solidarity (Arvut Hadadit) for her dedication to raising international concern surrounding crimes committed by Hamas around the October 7th attacks.

Elkayam-Levy established the “Civil Commission on October 7th Crimes by Hamas against Women and Children,” an independent, non-governmental collaboration of international human rights experts and women’s rights organizations created to advocate for and support the investigation of war crimes committed by Hamas against women and children during the massacre of October 7th and the continuous war crimes towards abducted women and children. The Civil Commission obtained and distributed credible information and lent its expertise to relevant bodies in Israel and internationally.

In the award committee’s deliberations, it was underscored that Dr. Elkayam-Levy’s unwavering commitment and dedication propelled her to act both nationally and internationally, culminating in the establishment of a Civil Commission dedicated to promoting human rights and gender equality.

“I am humbled and grateful to receive the Israel Prize and wish to express my sincere gratitude to the award committee and the Minister of Education for bestowing upon me this esteemed honor,” said Elkayam-Levy. “It is with great privilege that we work to raise awareness and give voice to the silenced victims and families whose lives were shattered by the October 7th atrocities. I am deeply thankful for the opportunity to advocate for the rights of women, children, and families worldwide. I also want to express my heartfelt gratitude to the numerous individuals who have tirelessly dedicated themselves to this vital cause alongside me. We must stand firm against the stark denial and the increasing tide of anti-Semitism.”

Dr. Elkayam-Levy is the Sophie Davis Fellow on Gender, Conflict Resolution, and Peace at the Hebrew University Leonard Davis Institute for International Relations. She teaches human rights law, international law, climate justice, and feminist theories at Hebrew University and at Reichman University. She is also the founding head of the Dvora Institute for Gender and Sustainability Studies, a Senior Fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem, Doctor of Juridical Science and former Human Rights Scholar of the University of Pennsylvania Law School; former Perry World House Fellow; A Salzburg Global Fellow for Outstanding Scholars in International Law, Washington D.C., and a member of the Israeli President’s new Climate Forum.

“Hebrew University takes immense pride in the profound impact Dr. Cochav Elkayam-Levy has had on raising awareness and acknowledgment of the atrocities committed against Israeli women, children, men, and families on and following October 7th,” says Prof. Asher Cohen, President of Hebrew University.” Her relentless dedication has served as a powerful catalyst for justice and remembrance, inspiring us all to confront adversity with courage and compassion. We congratulate Dr. Cochav Elkayam-Levy on being awarded the Israel Prize in a testament to her unwavering commitment to shedding light on one of the darkest chapters of our shared humanity.”

“Dr. Elkayam-Levy’s work in the international arena to expose the atrocities of Hamas is a crucial pillar in our ongoing struggle for justice and in our efforts to confront the perpetrators,” said Israel’s Education Minister Kish. “Congratulations on winning the prize, Dr. Elkayam-Levy. The people of Israel deeply value your work and extend their heartfelt gratitude to you.”

Link to the Civil Commission: