By Hannah Torregoza
Opposition Senator Leila de Lima has joined the ranks of 19 other world renowned human rights activists after she was included among the prominent human rights defenders from around the world who were featured at the Second Human Rights Defender World Summit held in Paris, France last month.
The Summit, held last October 29 to 31, paid tribute to all the human rights defenders or HRDs who were either killed or are unjustly imprisoned—including Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela—but have contributed a lot in a nation’s fight for justice, freedom and democracy.
“We pay tribute to all HRDs who were killed or are imprisoned. We demand justice for all of them, we celebrate the struggle of all those who resist despite the risks they face, and we’ll work together to protect HRDs across the world,” read a post from HRD World Summit Twitter account.
In paying tribute to the world human rights activists, participants of different nationalities gathered at the Place du Trocadéro in front of the Palais de Chaillot while flashing the photographs of all HRDs last Oct. 31.
The Place du Trocadéro is significantly the place where the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed 70 years ago.
Other human rights activists whose photographs were featured at the event include Abdulhadi al-Khawaja of Bahrain, Narges Mohammad of Iran, and Munir Said Thalib of Indonesia, among others.
De Lima is currently detained at the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City over drug allegations she said are trumped-up charges fabricated by the Duterte administration, borne out of the President’s personal vendetta against her.