23 January 2018, Tuesday, 3:05

Souhayr Belhassen: I dedicate FIDH anniversary to Ales Byalyatski


The 90th anniversary of FIDH was marked in Paris with participation of Mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoë and author of the Declaration of Human Rights Stéphane Hessel.

Souhayr Belhassen dedicated the anniversary of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) to 26 activists of the organisation imprisoned in different countries all over the world.

The FIDH president spoke about the people who paid the highest price for their activity, Viasna human rights centre reports.

”I am thinking about Ales Byalyatski, our vice president and head of Viasna human rights centre in Belarus, who was sentenced to 4.5 years in prison.

I am thinking about  Nabeel Rajab, FIDH Deputy Secretary and head of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, who was sentenced to two years in prison.

I am thinking about Nasrin Sotoudeh from Iran, who will receive the Sakharov Prize next week. Let's hope the prize will help her to overcome the isolation she faced after 11 years' prison sentence and 20 years' ban on her legal practice. I am thinking about her three colleagues from the Iran Human Rights Centre who met the same situation.

I am thinking about  Muharrem Erbey from Turkey, the vice president of the Turkish Human Rights Association, and his 13 colleagues behind bars.

I am thinking about five members of the Human Rights Society of Uzbekistan thrown into prisons.

These human rights activists are struggling for their freedom and their rights, but they are also struggling for our freedom and our rights.

I'd like to devote the celebration to them.

Your presence this evening here means you support our struggle. I thank you on behalf of them and FIDH.”

FIDH anniversary was celebrated on December 10 in the Paris City Hall with participation of Mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoë, author of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 Stéphane Hessel, prominent journalists, human rights activists and people of art.