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Civil Courage

“My Forgiveness, My Justice.”

As a teenager, Mr. Kalima lost both parents and other family members during the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. During the genocide, he survived a serious head injury inflicted by a machete and hiding in a swamp for over a month. His survival was made possible by a man who risked his own life to save his.

The Anthropologist Craig T. Palmer interviewed Mr. Kalima about his life and his choice to forgive the genocide perpetrators.


Kofi Annan words on the Italian Doctor Carlo Urbani, "a hero in the the best and truest sense of the word"

After the death of Carlo Urbani, the Italian doctor who first identified SARS and died of the same disease trying to fight it, the then Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan wanted to remember him with these words.


I Have No Enemies - My Final Statement

I look forward to [the day] when my country is a land with freedom of expression, where the speech of every citizen will be treated equally well; where different values, ideas, beliefs, and political views … can both compete with each other and peacefully coexist; where every citizen can state political views without fear, and where no one can under any circumstances suffer political persecution for voicing divergent political views. I hope that I will be the last victim of China’s endless literary inquisitions and that from now on no one will be incriminated because of speech.


Charter 08: the manifesto for the rule of law in communist China

In 2008, to mark the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 303 Chinese citizens signed the document "Charter 08" of which Liu Xiaobo was one of the editors and fundamental supporter, to demand that the rule of law apply in China. Here the full text.


The Olympionic Righteous

It is precisely among sportspeople that we find some Righteous figures who fought for life and human dignity, giving us an example which is even more important to remember in those difficult days. 


The monument of the choice at Lampedusa

I thought about my mom's story. If I could come into the world, I owe it to the fishermen who in 1943 with their boat brought my grandparents, my mother and her sisters from the Island of Evia in Greece to the coasts of Turkey. I often speak about this story of the Holocaust in order to remember our moral duty towards migrants. 


Civil courage

the strength of human dignity

Genocide cases and extreme circumstances of human rights violations, persecutions and deprivation of freedom have occurred all over the world. Those who find the courage to oppose, safeguard their own moral integrity, assessing the duty of truth, reporting the crimes against humanity and struggling to defend the founding value of civil coexistence can be defined as Righteous peopleJournalists like Sihem Bensedrine in Tunisia and writers like Gao Xingjian in China, diplomats like Enrico Calamai in Argentina and artists like Sunila Abeysekera in Sri Lanka, students like Bo Kyi in Burma and (union) activists or politicians like Maria Elena Moyano in Peru, Guillermo Chen in Guatemala, Fannie Lou Hamer in the USA, scientists, lawyers, doctors, intellectuals like Vassili Nesterenko in Belarus, Sylvie Maunga Mbanga in Congo, Halima Bashir in Darfur, Hashem Aghajari in Iran. Not to forget the prominent female figures advocating the rights of women trampled on in many world areas, like Betty Makoni in Zimbawe, Hawa Aden Mohamed in Somalia,  Khalida Toumi Messaoudi in Algeria,  Lydia Chaco in Mexico.
As well as the best-known advocates of human and civil rights like Nelson Mandela in South Africa, Aung San Suu Kyi in Burma, Anna Politkovskaja in Russia, Orhan Pamuk in Turkey, Natasha Kandic in Serbia and Svetlana Broz in Bosnia, Ayaan Hirsi Ali from Somalia, the mothers of Plaza de Mayo in Argentina. 

The book

Markings

Dag Hammarskjold

Featured story

Hu Jia

journalist and the man behind the “letter of a thousand signatures”