Rights Defence Network (China)

Launched in China in 2005, the Rights Defense Network (wei quan wang, WQW) has been the most active and effective human rights group to operate inside the country ever since. The group, which cannot be legally registered with the government because the government disapproves of it, is composed of activists, lawyers, journalists, writers, dissidents, and labor organizers who maintain loose association in physical space and use the Internet as their main tool for collecting, sharing, and disseminating information, organizing actions, and pursuing advocacy. The Network has played a vital role in monitoring, updating, and providing in-depth analyses of the rights situation inside China. It informs the public inside the country as well as the Chinese-language media overseas and the international community.

Speech to Joint Session of the United States Congress, Washington

„We are still a long way from that „family of man;“ in fact, we seem to be receding from the ideal rather than drawing closer to it. Interests of all kinds: personal, selfish, state, national, group and, if you like, company interests still considerably outweigh genuinely common and global interests. We are still under the sway of the destructive and thoroughly vain belief that man is the pinnacle of creation, and not just a part of it, and that therefore everything is permitted. There are still many who say they are concerdend not for themselves but for the cause, while they are demonstrably out for themselves and not for the cause at all. We are still destroying the planet that was entrusted to us, and its environment. We still close our eyes to the growing social, ethnic and cultural conflicts in the world. From time to time we say that the anonymous megamachinery we have created for ourselves no longer serves us but rather has enslaved us, yet we still fail to do anything about it.“

Václav Havel:
Speech to Joint Session of the United States Congress, Washington, February 21, 1990

What Price Human Rights?