Around the world, people face violent attacks and threats simply because of who they are or whom they have sex with. But some brave activists are still standing up for their rights. To mark the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOT) on May 17, we celebrate the courageous activism of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people worldwide. SEE THE REST OF THIS POST
Tragedies often bring out anger, outburst, and, sometimes, hate. Not so much in Norway. Amid the devastating massacre of dozens, Norway is making sure its soul of tolerance is not stained with blood. Below are top five inspiring quotes by Norwegian officials.
1. Mayor of Oslo: “We shall punish the terrorist, and this will be his punishment: more democracy, more tolerance, more generosity.”
2. Norwegian Prime Minister: “…the answer to violence is even more democracy.”
3. Diplomat Steinar Gil: “Norway will not change. Evil will not prevail.”
4. Norwegian Prime Minister: “With the strongest of all weapons — the free word and democracy — we stake our course for Norway.”
5. Crown Prince of Norway: “Tonight the streets are filled with love. We have chosen to meet hatred with unity. We have chosen to show what we stand for.”
Norway’s message is clear: counter terror with more democracy. As Ernest Hemingway has said, courage is grace under pressure. May the Norwegian victims rest in peace. And may Norway’s democracy prevail.
Chinese diplomats in Norway have been systematically pressurizing Chinese residents into joining anti-Nobel demonstrations, which are planned to take place in Oslo on Friday.
Amnesty International has been informed by reliable sources in the Chinese diaspora that mainland Chinese residents in Norway have been repeatedly visited and called to meetings over the last two months by representatives of the Chinese government.
The pressure exerted by these representatives is perceived by those visited or attending the meetings as threats, with concrete and serious consequences for the future livelihood of Chinese residents who fail to show up for these demonstrations.
“We are shocked that Chinese authorities would bring the oppressive atmosphere of Beijing to Oslo,” said John Peder Egenæs, Director of Amnesty International Norway. “It’s shameful and saddening that Chinese people feel pressured to demonstrate against the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize on a day that should be one of pride and celebration.”
Join us in calling for the immediate release of Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo.