Ms. Kar is among Iran's most esteemed human rights defenders, legal scholars and feminist activists. Despite the Islamic Republic's frequent attempts to impede her efforts, she has for decades been an active public defender in Iran’s civil and criminal courts, and has published regularly in several influential and independent Iranian journals. Banned from making public appearances within her country, including at conferences and on radio and television, Ms. Kar has used international forums as a platform for voicing her opinions and advocating for the human rights of the Iranian people. In April of 2000, following her participation at an international symposium in Berlin, she was arrested and imprisoned on charges of acting against the national security of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Three of the five charges against her are pending, for which she may again be arrested upon her return.
Ms. Kar has been a fellow at The Brookings Institution and Harvard University. Today, she lives in Washington DC and is part of the Tavaana Institute team. Recently, she founded the Siamak Pourzand Foundation for the promotion of Human Rights.