The Appeal for Democratic Renewal issued in Prague

May 31, 2017

Over sixty global intellectuals and democracy activists have issued The Prague Appeal for Democratic Renewal ("The Appeal"). The group, including Nobel laureate Svetlana Alexievich, writer, political scientist and philosopher Francis Fukuyama, Russian chess grandmaster and political activist Garry Kasparov, French philosopher Bernard-Hénri Levy, Hong Kong student leader and legislator Nathan Law, journalist and author Anne Applebaum, political scientist Ivan Krastev, youth activist Rosa María Payá, or Ivan Havel, a scientist and brother of the late Czech President Václav Havel, identifies a number of key problems threatening democracy both from without and within and calls for reaffirmation of the fundamental democratic principles and for active defense of democracy. The signatories express their concern with the expansion of power and influence of authoritarian regimes such as China and Russia, as well as with the weakening of democratic systems from within.

„Liberal democracy is under threat, and all who cherish it must come to its defense. Faith in democratic institutions has been declining as governments seem unable to cope with the complex new challenges of globalization. Political processes appear increasingly sclerotic and dysfunctional, and the bureaucracies managing both national and global institutions seem remote and overbearing. Terrorist violence has created a climate of fear that is used by despots and demagogues to justify authoritarian power and restrictions on freedoms,” states The Prague Appeal for Democratic Renewal.

The Appeal is a first step in creating a worldwide Coalition for Democratic Renewal. The Coalition will be officially launched in Prague, Czech Republic, within the framework of the annual Forum 2000 Conference on October 8-10, 2017.