12:09 GMT23 October 2020
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    FLOTUS attended the landmark State Department event for the fourth consecutive year, this time conferring honours upon twelve women recognised for their accomplishments in the US and beyond. The event, however, kicked up a real storm on social networks, with many dwelling on the First Lady’s own highs and lows.

    In comments made at the International Women of Courage Awards hosted by the State Department in Washington, First Lady Melania stressed she is “proud of what this country continues to do for women".

    “I'm honoured to represent a nation that not only recognises women around the world who are making a difference internationally, but empowers and supports them in their endeavours so they can affect positive change for others", FLOTUS remarked.

    Speaking at the annual event for the fourth consecutive time, she noted that throughout history, “individuals who make the greatest impact and create the most change are all remembered for their acts of courage".

    The “only all-female award” as it is formally described globally recognisees women who showcased “exceptional courage and leadership", with the total number of Wednesday’s honourees reaching 12.

    "These women represent the strength of the female spirit", Trump said while distributing the awards together with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. The honourees, FLOTUS stated, “have pushed through gender-based stereotypes to serve the greater good", while also lauding women in the US at large:

    "In the United States, women are playing vital roles in society: they are mothers, wives, doctors, CEOs, and elected officials, to name just a few", Trump said emphasising today’s historically low unemployment rate among women.

    Trump, whose BeBest imitative from 2018 caters to children’s well-being, health, and digital security said celebrating today’s women’s accomplishements and professional aspirations “tied nicely” into her brainchild project citing “support and guidance” needed for children to “enter adulthood with empathy and strength".

    The award has spawned divisive comments online. While many touted the group of honourees, along with those that conferred the award, some added a fly into the ointment. Critics, naturally, brought up her being married to “vile bully” Donald Trump, suggesting she only “pretends to care about online bullying":

    Long-busted accusations against Trump also re-surfaced, along with critics’ recurrent rhetoric about separated families on the border:

    “Donald Trump doesn't like women of courage, I think he fears them", one remarked.

    A great many wholeheartedly shared the joy of the nominees, touting their accomplishments and the ceremony itself:

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    female, award, online, netizens, Twitter, Donald Trump, Melania Trump
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