The ceremony will take place on 6 December at the European Parliament in Brussels, where the wife of Raif Badawi, Ensaf Haidar, will receive the award on his behalf. Badawi remains in jail in Saudi Arabia where his physical condition has worsened over the past year and the threat of receiving a second set of 5000 lashes has become imminent.
Under the theme “Freedom of Belief in an Era of Radicalization”, the Human Rights Committee will meet to discuss strategies to debunk the stigmatization of religious and in particular Muslim minorities, when it comes to radicalization and violent extremism and, at the same time address, the fine line between freedom of speech and freedom of belief.
The highlight of the meeting will include a field visit to Molenbeek: a neighbourhood in Brussels known as the “radicalization hub” of Belgium. The visit will be hosted by the Mayor of the Municipality Ms. Françoise Schepmans (Mouvement Réformateur, LI full-member) at the Cultural Centre of Molenbeek, where she will provide an overview of the situation on the ground, alongside a local radicalization prevention officer and Mr. Jo De Ro, Member of Parliament and Former Deputy Mayor of Vilvoorde (Open VLD, LI full-member).
The second part of the event will take place at the European Parliament in Brussels upon the invitation of LI HRC Member Ilhan Kyuchyuk MEP (Movement for Rights and Freedom, LI full-member) and it will feature input from Mr. Adam Deen, Managing Director from the Quilliam Foundation and Dr. Solomon Passy, Former Foreign Minister of Bulgaria.
The former President of the ALDE Party Sir Graham Watson (Liberal Democrats, LI full-member) will host an evening reception for LI delegates attending the meeting at the Representative Office of Gibraltar in Brussels in his capacity as Head of the Gibraltarian Representation.
Ensaf Haidar contributed to the 3rd Edition of LI Human Rights Bulletin on Freedom of Belief where in an exclusive video message for Liberal International, she expressed the importance of joining her husband’s struggle for the promotion of individual liberties and freedom of belief in Saudi Arabia and beyond.