Human rights summit wins global platform for dissidents

Last week’s 9th Geneva Summit for Human Rights gave dissidents a global platform through reports that appeared in media agencies around the world.

The Guardian: “In an age of autocracy, meet the dissidents speaking truth to power”
Strongmen are back in vogue, but these six people are determined to defy the despots.
The Independent: “UK accused of ‘blatant double standard’ over arms sales to Saudi Arabia”
James Jones, a British filmmaker who exposed the Gulf state’s human rights abuses in his documentary Saudi Arabia Uncovered, said Britain remains “closer than ever” to its ally despite a litany of human rights abuses… He spoke on the issue at the Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy, held at the start of the UN Human Rights Council session at Switzerland’s Palais des Nations.
Bild: “Wie Diktatoren den Menschenrechts-Rat zerstören”
“How dictators destroy the UN Human Rights Council”
Representatives of the most brutal regimes in the world will meet from Monday in Geneva—for the next session of the UN Human Rights Council. Among current member states: Saudi Arabia, Cuba, Venezuela, China.
RTS (Swiss TV): “la jeune femme de 20 ans témoigne de l’horreur de Daech”
“Shirin: the young 20-year-old woman testifies on the horrors of ISIS”
This young woman was kidnapped and sold to several people before fleeing her condition as a sex slave.
(TV news broadcast – in French)
Al Jazeera: Interview with Hillel Neuer
Mr. Neuer spoke about how our parallel human rights conference last week ( took place on the eve of the U.N. Human Rights Council opening its annual session. While abusers like China, Cuba, and Saudi Arabia were elected, we were giving a global platform to their victims, and to courageous activists who were persecuted in Iran, Mauritania and Venezuela. We urged the U.N. to take action to protect the victims—people like Raif Badawi, the jailed Saudi human rights hero.
Le Monde: “Kim Jong-nam, itinéraire d’un héritier Francophile”
“Kim Jong-nam, profile of a Francophile heir”
Kim Kwang- jin, who helped to finance the regime before he defected in 2003, said the role of Kim Jong-Nam in North Korean financing was more elementary: “From what I know, he was trying to find financing for maintaining his current standard of living rather than finding funds for the regime.”
France24 English: “Turkey is the biggest jail for journalists in the world”
Dündar has become a symbol of the crackdown on the press in Turkey under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He spoke to FRANCE 24 from Geneva about the state of press freedom in his home country.
Deutsche Welle (Spanish): “Cumbre de Derechos Humanos en Ginebra”
“Human Rights Summit in Geneva”
Activists, journalists and politicians want to alert the international community to human rights abuses. In that forum, our special envoy, Nocole Frölich, interviewed Antonietta Ledezma, daughter of the Venezuelan mayor imprisoned for two years.
BBC Vietnam: “Dang Xuan Dieu speech on human rights in Geneva”
Today, Feb 20, Mr. Dang told the BBC from Switzerland: “This is the first time I’ve had the opportunity to speak before an important conference. I do this while my health is still not recovered after many years in prison. However, what the conference needs is my presence as a direct victim of bone, flesh and experiences on the status of human rights violations in Vietnam.”
Tribune de Genève: «L’Arabie saoudite, c’est Daech avec du pétrole!»
“Saudi Arabia is Daesh with oil!”
Shocking Documentary: Filmed with a hidden camera, James Jones’ documentary reveals the secrets of the Kingdom withheld from the West. He is interviewed in Geneva.
Tribune de Genève: Une esclave sexuelle Yézidie honorée à Genève
“Yazidi sex slave honored in Geneva”
Shirin, a representative of the Yazidi minority in Iraq, will receive a women’s rights award presented by 25 NGOs in Geneva. She was sold as a sex slave at the age of 17 and raped by nine jihadis of the Islamic State (IS).
Radio France Internationale: Antonietta Ledezma: “En Venezuela sólo los demócratas van a la cárcel”
“Antonietta Ledezma: In Venezuela only the Democrats go to prison”
RFI spoke with Antonietta Ledezma after appearing in front of an international forum and United Nations authorities. The young activist spoke about the health of her father and the harassment of the regime of Nicholas Maduro to his family whenever they travel abroad.
El Nacional (From EFE): Antonietta Ledezma: “Lucho por mi padre y por rescatar a mi país”
“Antonietta Ledezma: I fight for my father and for the rescue of my country”
“My struggle is not only for my father, but for all the political prisoners in Venezuela, because I do not want more daughters, more mothers and more parents to go through what I and my family have gone through and keep going through, and what so many families In Venezuela are experiencing,” said Ledezma in an interview at the Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy.
Martinoticias: El Sexto denuncia en Ginebra encarcelamientos sin juicio en Cuba
“El Sexto denounces imprisonment without trial in Cuba”
At the conclusion of his speech, accompanied by a song by the contentious rapper Raudel Collazo (Patriot Squad), El Sexto performed live graffiti art that brought applause from the audience… The annual conference is being held in Geneva before Foreign Ministers meet to inaugurate the session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.
Luzerner Zeitung: Menschenrechtsgipfel zeigt Licht und Schatten medialer Macht auf
“Human rights summit shows the lights and shadow of media power”
The 9th Summit on Human Rights and Democracy in Geneva began with a praise for Switzerland. “Not every country would be open to this event,” said Hillel Neuer, Executive Director of UN Watch, a non-governmental organization in Geneva. It is uncertain whether the summit could be held today in the USA, as it was six years ago. Several of the politically persecuted people who spoke of their situation at the summit are from countries affected by the entry ban imposed by the US and Donald Trump on citizens of Muslim countries.
Luzerner Zeitung: Sprachgewaltig gegen die Autokratie
“Language used against Autocratic violence”
Can Dündar holds up a ballpoint pen. “This is our strongest weapon against authoritarianism,” says the former editor-in-chief of the Turkish newspaper Cumhuriyet. Dündar has been living in exile in Germany since last year. In his home country, he is threatened with imprisonment.

UN Watch