Category: Human Rights

Thor Halvorssen Brings Human Rights to the Mainstream

The human rights activism community has always been one of the most worthy among the many groups trying to help those affected by negative issues within society; however, the results achieved by many human rights groups are questionable in the eyes of many who are looking to fight for people stranded in closed societies. Thor Halvorssen is the head of the Human Rights Foundation, a group started by the Venezuelan film producer after he became disillusioned with the way mainstream groups were using their funds and time in the 21st century.

Thor Halvorssen knows the urgency that is required in the human rights activism community after seeing members of his own family affected by many human rights losses, including imprisonment, torture, and personal injury caused by their political beliefs. Halvorssen himself has been active in the human rights community since his days in college and made his first impression on the media with a protest against Chinese slavery laws.

One of the areas Thor Halvorssen believes has affected the human rights community is the issue of reports and investigations being undertaken in democratic countries in the developed world. The founder of the Oslo Freedom Forum believes too much time, effort, and money is being placed on human rights issues in the U.S. and Europe; Halvorssen’s work with the Human Right Foundation is generally focused on areas of the word where tyrants and dictators are in power ruling their citizens with an iron fist. Unlike many individuals working in the human rights activism community Thor is willing to place his own body on the line and faced being assaulted by government officials in Vietnam when he interviewed a political prisoner in the country.

Halvorssen has dedicated much of his recent career to bringing news of dictators around the world to the mainstream media through his writings and appearances with many popular news networks. One of the political leaders Thor Halvorssen has dedicated much of his time to opposing is Russian leader Vladimir Putin through his backing of political dissidents Gary Kasparov and the activists “Pussy Riot”.

Yeonmi Park’s Hope for North Korea

Yeonmi Park is one of the fast advancing human rights activists globally. At the age of 21 years, the North Korean born charismatic and brave lady has made headlines all over the world on human rights violation by the heartless regimes. Her wretched story about the encounter with the North Korean oppressive regime has left many in tears.

Park was born in a remote part of North Korea known as Hyesan. Yeonmi Park narrates a tearful experience on youtube of a life full of sorrow and anguish inflicted on her and her family by the tyrannical and cruel North Korean government.

In one of her interviews, Park recalls how freedom in North Korea is something only heard about, but never experienced. She talks of how the government controls everything they do and every move they take. Park narrates her ordeal in the hands of the North Korean government that further compels her family to find a way of escape from the country. With the increasing rates of violence and starvation in North Korea, they had to find a way out.

With the help of someone Park and her mother were able to escape from North Korea to China. In China, things did not go well for them either; Park talks of how a man raped her mother when she tried to save her from the ordeal. With the desire to live a life of dignity, Park and her mother decided to leave China. They endured the cold Gobi desert with the determination that one day they will find freedom. They finally arrived in South Korea with her mother vowing never to set foot on the North Korean soil again.

In her ambition to expose the filth and the brutality of North Korean Government, Park has been traveling all over the world telling her heart-wrenching story to big audiences. She has been published in many newspapers and journals retelling her stories. She has indeed become an inspiration to thousands of oppressed people globally. By encouraging them to embrace bravery, many people have come out of their closets to expose many cases of oppression by authorities without fear. Her dream for many is for everyone to obtain freedom.

Park has experienced challenges in her efforts to preach against oppression in North Korea. The government has tried to hamper her efforts by issuing threats to her and her associates. For example, Maryanne Vollers received an email from the North Korean Press barring her from writing with Park. The government had even forced her family to refute her claims and term them as lies. Recently Park had to refute the claims by the North Korean Government that she had been lying about her family in her stories.

Despite all the threats and potential dangers she could be exposed to, Park has vowed to continue exposing the brutalities of the North Korean regime.