The first day of the online 24th Forum 2000 Conference is successfully behind us.
The speakers of today’s sessions naturally touched upon the theme of the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on the new emerging world. Historian Timtohy Garton Ash referred to this ongoing crisis as dark, difficult, daunting times. Yet, he also pointed out that if we have truth, solidarity, strategy and responsibility, there will be brighter times ahead.
David Harris, CEO of AJC, then noted that we are missing strong, bold, courageous and visionary leaders. Those who do not follow, but those who lead. Former Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Vesna Pusić, also emphasized the role of education in a fight against populism and growing antipathy towards liberal democracy.
Hong Kong artist and activist Wai Ting Loretta Lau reminded that China’s human rights problem is not just domestic, but it is a universal affair upon which should be acted internationally.
Tomorrow afternoon will again be full of discussions. We will welcome, among others, Belarusian President-elect Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs Tomáš Petříček and Chairman of the Human Rights Foundation Garry Kasparov.
And we will continue in the spirit of Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger’s today’s words – that liberal ideas are still inspiring, not boring and that it might be dangerous to fight for them.