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Writer Mariam Behnam passes away at 94.

Those who knew Mariam Behnam, fondly remember her as a mother, a legend who fought for the rights of girls and women here and in Pakistan.

Dubai: Cultural ambassador, diplomat, activist and writer Mariam Behnam passed away in Dubai on Thursday. She was 94.

Those who knew her, fondly remember her as a mother, a legend who fought for the rights of girls and women here and in Pakistan.

"She believed culture and heritage was all you could hang on to, which was fundamental, even as technological advances took over lives," said her daughter Shahnaz, one of her four children. She is also survived by grandchildren, and great grandchildren.

Born to a leading family of pearl merchants with links to Dubai in the 1920s, she fled Iran in 1979 during the revolution. She was active in the cultural scene in her favourite city, Dubai, which she called the 'blessed land', and her experiences helped her pen four books -- Zalzalah - A Woman Before Her Time, Heirloom - Evening Tales From the East (autobiography), The Role of a Friend, and Raindrops. Mariam was working on her fifth book, a work of fiction, at the time of her demise. She also strived to promote traditional women's handicrafts and help organise many exhibitions in the 1980s. She published poems in Farsi, Urdu and English.

In the 1960s, she was made cultural consul of the Iranian government. Later, she was cultural attache at the Iran Cultural Centre in Lahore, Pakistan.

Condolences will be received today, tomorrow and on Sunday at her residence.

news@khaleejtimes.com

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Publication:Khaleej Times (Dubai, United Arab Emirates)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Dec 4, 2014
Words:273
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