Human Rights Foundation Director Thor Halvorssen Looks For Trouble

In an article from the Weekly Standard, Thor Halvorssen is presented as not your run-of-the-mill human rights activist.

The 39-year-old Halvorssen doesn’t mind taking chances (or a few beatings) to shed light on wrongdoings around the globe. The founder of the New York-based Human Rights Foundation (HRF) gets his tenacity honest. The half-Norwegian, half-Venezuelan swashbuckler comes from a mother who is a direct descendant of Venezuela’s first president. His father was the hand of the King of Sweden during WWII. He also has a long list of other assorted self-proclaimed troublemakers in his family including a cousin, who is being held as a political prisoner in Venezuela. His father is also serving time for revealing government corruption. Good stock, indeed.

Nothing stops Halvorssen. Nothing. His critics are amazed by all the bullets (some literally) that he’s dodged. “They all want me to shut up. But that’s not going to happen,” says Halvorssen.

Thor Halvorssen says he loves people. It’s in his blood to help individuals who cannot otherwise help themselves. He’s been standing up since the age of 13. While living in London, Thor Halvorssen organized an apartheid rally against South Africa. He continued over the years to organizing events to help release political prisoners, shed light on abuses to children and promote tolerance around the world.

Halvorssen has seen danger in his travels. He has come very close to dying for his cause. In 2010, he traveled to Vietnam to interview the head of the country’s Buddhist church, who is under house arrest.

He was able to conduct the interview with a hidden camera. It still didn’t go well. After his cameraman smuggled the interview tape out, he sustained a violent beating from authorities. Unfazed, he still continued on.

The HRF has staff all around the globe, watching and waiting for wrongs to report. Once it’s highlighted, Thor Halvorssen is on his way. Find Halvorssen on Facebook to learn more.

Thor Halvorssen Reflects on the Human Rights Foundation

Thor Halvorssen is a man who often likes to reflect on his life work and on his personal mission. He is a man of many tastes, and altruism is a central focus of his life. Born in Venezuela, Thor realized very young that life’s niche was to be an advocate for the underdog and for the powerless. He would grow up and become a world-famous film producer and had contributions in the field of public policy, public interest and civil liberties.

In 2007, Thor Halvorssen was described by the New York times as an individual who is very much at home being a maverick and as one who “champions the underdog and the powerless.” Halvorssen has been described by others as having a burning desire to right the countless injustices that are present in this world and is committed to being a voice against different dictatorships, including the one in Venezuela.

As founder of the human rights foundation, Thor Halvorssen cannot help but reflect on the fact that he has come a long way. He also cannot help but notice that his foundation has come a long way as well. As a pioneer of human rights, Halvorssen knows that his struggle will continue many years in the future and well past his time of mortality on this earth has come to a close. However, as a human rights activist, he knows he cannot help but be proud of the many individuals he has helped through the years and the ones that his organization is trying to help at present. At present, there are a number of important causes that his group is championing. Here are just a few to look at:

1. Morocco

The Human Rights Foundation sent a strongly-worded condemnation to this nation earlier this month because of their crackdown on freedom of speech. Morocco’s system of government is an absolutist monarchy, and so criticizing their policies results in harsh punishments. The Humans Rights Foundation (HRF) is advocating for Mohamed Essabr, Samad Iach, Hicham Mansouri, Hisham Almiraat, and Maati Monjib in particular because they developed an app that allegedly “threatened the security of the state.”

2. Turkey

Journalists Can Dundar and Erdem Gul were arrested on November 26 and are facing life in prison simply for reporting that the Turkish government armed Islamic rebel groups in Syria.

3. Vietnam

Halvorssen’s HRF organization is also protesting the cruel treatment of human rights lawyer Nguyen Van Dai due to their arrest on December 16, 2015. The human rights lawyer is a well-known advocate for democracy in the country and was charged with “conducting propaganda against the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.”

As you can see, these and many other issues remain very important to Thor Halvorssen and his organization.

HRF Makes Impacts With Advocacy Campaigns

The Human Rights Foundation  was founded by Thor Halvorssen, who has started many other non-profit groups as well. Halvorssen founded this nonprofit and politically nonpartisan organization with the ideas that humans from all backgrounds and lifestyles are entitled to unalienable human rights, such as freedom of speech and self-determination.

Unfortunately, these God-given rights aren’t available to all people around the globe. Thor Halvorssen has set out to pursue this goal through his organization’s many advocacy campaigns. These campaigns all have the same common goals: to expose the mistreatment of people and the violation of their rights. These campaigns are designed to educate people on tyrannical countries and the cruel conditions that many of their citizens face.

The Sugar Babies is a campaigning documentary that sheds light on the horrific conditions that children in the Dominican Republic, who work on sugar farms, are subjected to. This documentary was made possible through risky techniques, such as hidden camera placement and talks with high-ranking United States officials.

The Human Rights Foundation also sent a petition and legal report to the United Nations about the lack of authority asserted by the Pakistani Government regarding the gang raping of Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani woman.

These two programs are just a couple of the advocacy projects that are endorsed by the Human Rights Foundation. By revealing the atrocities and inequality against mankind, HRF helps to take a stand on the most critical issue that has always been present in our world.

Many of these campaigns are directly overseen by Mr. Halvorssen himself, such as the Sugar Babies documentary. He began his advocacy career in 1989 at an apartheid opposition in London. He established HRF in 2005 and is currently sits on it’s board of directors. He’s appeared on many News Programs, such as Fox and al-Jazeera, and has talked about his opinions, concerns and current project in several other publications.