His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Suu Kyi to attend Czech Forum


August 27, 2013 10:49 pm

Personal friends Vaclav Havel (L) and His Holiness The Dalai Lama (R) in Prague in 2008.

DHARAMSHALA: His Holiness the Dalai Lama will join a galaxy of world leaders, including fellow Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, at a human rights forum in Czech Republic from 15-17 September. 

The theme for the 17th annual Forum 2000 conference in Prague is ‘Societies in Transition’. 

More than 100 global leaders from politics, academia, civil society, media, business and religion will discuss challenges and threats related to democratic transitions. 

“The aim is to better understand what is needed during the transition from an authoritarian regime to a democracy but also to better understand the things that causes these processes to grind to a halt or lose their way,” executive director Jakub Klepal was quoted as saying by AFP news agency. 

The annual forum was launched the late Czech Velvet Revolution icon Vaclav Havel and American Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel in 1997.

Former Czech President Havel’s concerns over Tibet led to close relations with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. In 2004, His Holiness the Dalai Lama awarded the Light of Truth award to Mr Havel for his outstanding contribution to public understanding of Tibet and its current plight. His Holiness visited Prague a week before Mr Havel’s death in December 2011 and spent time with him. His Holiness described Mr Havel as a “great statesman whose steadfast and unflinching determination played a key role in bringing freedom and democracy to the then Czechoslovakia.” 

Apart from attending the Czech forum, His Holiness the Dalai Lama will give a public talk on ‘Compassion and Respect in Today’s Society’ and teaching on ‘Eight Verses of Training the Mind by Geshe Langri Thangpa’ on 14 and 15 September respectively.  The talk will be broadcasted on the Forum website