Home >
Our work >
Speaking out >
MEDIA RELEASE Parliamentary Forum for Democracy leaders pay tribute to one of the 20th century’s great democratic leaders
back
December 20, 2011

MEDIA RELEASE Parliamentary Forum for Democracy leaders pay tribute to one of the 20th century’s great democratic leaders

 

The Parliamentary Forum for Democracy (PFD) is an international civil organization – made up of current and former members of parliament - dedicated to strengthening democracy and democratic institutions around the world

“With the passing of Vaclav Havel, democracy has lost one its great champions. Freedom was brought to central and eastern Europe through the struggles of many, but he was one of their standard bearers” said the PFD’s’ (Lithuanian) Chairperson Emanuelis Zingeris MP on Sunday.

PFD Governing Council member and Mexican Senator  - Adriana Gonzalez Carrillo said “He has been certainly a great inspiration to millions around the world. His death is a terrible loss for those who believe on democracy and the construction of a better world.”

 

PFD Governing Council member and US Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart said “I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of President Vaclav Havel.  I send my heartfelt condolences to his family and to the people of the Czech Republic for this terrible loss. Through his leadership that helped to spark the Czech Republic’s Velvet Revolution, and his solidarity with those who struggle against repression throughout the world, President Havel was a true hero.  He became an icon of freedom which helped to spark the tremendous transformation in Eastern Europe”.

 

 “Havel should not just be remembered as a leader who brought down a communist dictatorship, he should also be remembered as a leader who helped entrench democracy in the Czech Republic” said Chairperson Zingeris

“A single free election does not a democracy society make.  Democracy requires eternal vigilance, even among the oldest democratic societies. A democratic society is characterised by a free and open flow of ideas, a dynamic civil society and the rule of law, the Czech Republic that Havel left behind has all of these things in abundance ” said Chairperson Zingeris.

 

“Although in his time Havel helped to bring about a flowering of democracy, many countries, including some here in Europe, are still suffering under authoritarian regimes or are still yet to firmly entrench democratic institutions. The Parliamentary Forum for Democracy is continuing Havel’s struggle; its goals are to stand in solidarity with democrats struggling for freedom around the world, and to use the skills of its members to strengthen democratic parliaments, particularly in new and emerging democracies” said Chairperson Zingeris.

back