Gathering with freedom fighters from five continents in the capitol of human rights, Liberal International’s president of honour, Hans van Baalen MEP, took the stage at the opening of the LI co-hosted 10th Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy in Geneva, Switzerland this week for one of the largest annual gatherings of human rights defenders from around the world.
In the year that the 70th-anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is celebrated, Mr Van Baalen delivered a concerted call to action ahead of the summit: “To end all forms of human rights abuse… each one of us [must] stand up and speak out against injustices and blatant human rights violations in our communities.”
Alongside the human rights heroes, the LI president of honour declared that human rights are core to the liberal ideology: “Hollow phrases on human rights are shameful: we need action and we as liberal politicians can help and we can make a difference… we have to make a change and this summit is one of the few options to make this change”, Hans van Baalen said.
WATCH: first-hand testimonies of what life is like if you are a free thinker inside Castro’s Cuba, Maduro’s Venezuela, Erdoğan’s Turkey, and many other authoritarian regimes besides.
The Geneva Summit, now in its tenth year, runs from Monday 19th February until Tuesday 20th February. More information can be found on the Summit website and on social media using the hashtag #GS18