My upcoming “Word of the President” for the newsletter of ISHR

As President of the ISHR I have been invited to testify on November 28, 2018 in the Human Rights Council of the German Federal Parliament (“Deutscher Bundestag”) on “Threatened People” on November 28, 2018. Having studied ethnology/cultural anthropology among other subjects, this is a topic that has accompanied me all my life.

Foto: Schirrmacher in EcuadorThere are human rights violations that do not target just individuals, but whole peoples, may it be ethnic people groups, language groups, religious groups, low-class economic groups, or very often a mix out of those elements. I just visited such ethnic groups in Ecuador and in Peru on an altitude between 2600 and 3500 meter, beside partner organisations there involved in fighting for the freedom of press. In Ecuador it is more the tribes that did fight against the Inkas centuries ago, in Peru it is more the descendants of the Inkas in the mountains of the picturous Andes, that are threatened – see the photo with descendants from the Inkas showing us, how they still produce clothes out of alpaca wool with naturals dyes the same way as it was done 500 years ago.

The ISHR has a long history of fighting for the human rights of threatened people like the Jezids in Iraq, the Kurds in Turkey, the Rohingya in Myanmar, the Syrian-Orthodox Christians in Syria, The Tibetans and Uigurs in China, the Ahmadiyya in Pakistan or the Armenians in Turkey and else. This has lead us to a network of good friends and an experience of hospitality worldwide, which I never want to miss.


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