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Mazen Darwish still under arrest

38-year-old Syrian journalist and founder of the Syrian Centre for Media and Freedom of Expression is still being held by the Syrian authorities. Calls from international human rights organizations for his immediate release go unheeded. Darwish and his 13 employees were taken into custody on February 16 by Syrian security forces.

Roland Berger Foundation calls for the immediate release of Syrian journalist and human rights campaigner Mazen Darwish and all his colleagues at the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression

On Thursday night, security officials of the Syrian regime stormed the offices of the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression in Damascus. They arrested its founder and director, Mazen Darwish, along with all his staff at the center. This action has caused great dismay at the Roland Berger Foundation, which was able to announce the news on Friday afternoon.

Message from Mr. Mazen Darwish

His Excellency President of the Federal Republic of Germany; dear Roland Berger, the founder of the Foundation; ladies and gentlemen: The fact that I cannot be with you today is an indicator of the fact that despotism does not deprive us only of our freedom, but also of any possibility of joy or happiness.

German President honouring arabic activists

We are sitting here to honour three activists who worked under very difficult conditions to help their people, and they are still working. "Human Dignity is a human right", but what happened in the last days in Egypt shows us that we are far away from this right, and also what happens since months in Syria.

Winners of the Roland Berger Human Dignity Award 2011

Freedom of expression was one of the first victories of the Arab Spring. In Tunisia, the media are now enjoying a new sense of freedom. After years of harsh censorship, Tunisian journalists can now speak freely and do their job in far better conditions.

The Berlin Forum

Das Berliner Menschenwürdeforum ist eine jährliche Veranstaltung in Berlin, die seit 2011 Entscheider, Experten und interessierte Personen aus der ganzen Welt zum Thema Menschenwürde zusammenbringt und so eine Plattform für den Austausch über aktuelle und relevante Aspekte der Menschenwürde schafft. Das Berliner Menschenwürdeforum wurde auf Initiative der Roland Berger Stiftung ins Leben gerufen und soll künftig jedes Jahr am 22. November in Berlin stattfinden.

Established in 2011, the Berlin Forum for Human Dignity is an annual event. It brings together decision makers, experts and interested parties from around the world to discuss current and relevant aspects of human dignity. The Berlin Forum for Human Dignity was set up at the behest of the Roland Berger Foundation and will take place in Berlin every year on November 22.

Mazen Darwish – Syria´s most fervent freedom of speech defender

37-year-old Mazen Darwish was one of the first human rights activists in Syria. He has been fighting for freedom of expression for more than 10 years, facing prison, harassment and the prohibition to travel outside Syria.

He helped establish the Committees for the Defence of Democratic Freedom and Human Rights (CDF). Later he founded the Syrian Centre for Media and Freedom of Expression (SCM), with the objective of defending journalists and human rights. Darwish is married and has two children.

Gamal Eid – Egypt’s leading human rights lawyer and promoter of free speech

47-year-old lawyer Gamal Eid is one of the most important human rights activists in Egypt and the Arab world. He has legally defended most of Egypt's human rights activists and is one of the most prominent publishers and speakers on human rights and freedom of expression.

He is the founder and Executive Director of the Arabic Network of Human Rights Information (ANHRI), a key player in the Egyptian and Arab human rights movement.

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