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Biden nominates first US Muslim woman as Federal Judge

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Nusrat Jahan Choudhury

US President Joe Biden has nominated the first Muslim-American woman to be a judge on a federal court in the United States, the White House said on Wednesday, as it announced a list of diverse judicial nominees.

If confirmed by the US Senate, Nusrat Jahan Choudhury, a civil rights lawyer of Bangladeshi descent, would serve in a federal district court in New York state.

“A nominee who would be the first Bangladeshi-American, the first Muslim-American woman, and only the second Muslim-American person to serve as a federal judge,” the White House said in a statement on Wednesday, referring to Choudhury.

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Choudhury currently serves as the legal director of the Illinois chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), a civil rights advocacy group. She previously worked in various capacities at the organisation, including as deputy director of the ACLU’s racial justice programme in New York.

She has been involved in numerous civil rights cases, including lawsuits challenging the federal government’s No Fly List and the New York Police Department’s surveillance of the city’s Muslim community.

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In September 2021, Democratic Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer formally recommended Choudhury to serve on the federal bench in New York, calling her an “expert in civil rights and liberties”.

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