Both of them will now join the existing members of the committee, namely the former president of South Africa Frederik Willem de Klerk, the chairman of The Nippon Foundation and co-founder of Forum 2000 Yohei Sasakawa, the former dissident and editor-in-chief of the Gazeta Wyborcza daily Adam Michnik, the scientist and brother of the late Czech president Václav Havel Ivan Havel, and the director of the People in Need foundation Šimon Pánek.
"I know that Forum 2000 will keep up the spirit of Václav Havel's tireless work with renewed vigor and determination," His Holiness the Dalia Lama wrote in a letter to Forum 2000. "I look forward to working in close cooperation with Forum 2000 Foundation towards building a more peaceful, open and just world."
"We are very pleased that, besides His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the Burmese opposition politician Aung San Suu Kyi has also accepted membership of the International Advisory Board of the Forum 2000 Foundation," said the Forum 2000 Foundation's executive director Jakub Klepal. "We invited her to the conference every year even though it was clear to us that the governing regime would not let her travel. Now she is finally free and therefore we hope that we will be able to welcome both her and His Holiness the Dalai Lama to Prague in the near future."
"The International Advisory Board of the Forum 2000 Foundation comprises a group of respected figures from different cultures, traditions, and religious affiliations, who are united by their belief in democracy, the universality of human rights, and in a lively and vibrant civil society," Klepal added. "Václav Havel also shared the same values. The members of the Board are global ambassadors for the foundation and at the same time they also come up with their own recommendations concerning the subjects and projects that Forum 2000 devotes itself to."
The members of the International Advisory Board are also invited to the annual Forum 2000 conferences, which provide a platform for timely dialogue on the complex issues that are crucial to the future of our civilisation. The 16th annual Forum 2000 Conference will be held in Prague from 21 to 23 October. In accordance with the wishes of the late Czech president Václav Havel, the conference will focus on the relationship between democracy and the media. It will also focus on the legacy of Václav Havel in the field of democracy and human rights as well as ways in which this can be built upon and developed further.
As of today's date, more than 120 prominent global figures have confirmed their attendance at the conference, e.g. the former U.S. secretary of state Madeleine Albright, the British philosopher Roger Scruton, the Tibetan prime minister Lobsang Sangay, the Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, and the former Slovak prime minister Iveta Radi?ová. You can find a list of all the confirmed delegates here as well as a preliminary conference program here. Upon registration, admission to the conference is free and open to the public. You can watch online streaming of the main part of the conference at www.forum2000.cz
The Forum 2000 Foundation pursues the legacy of Václav Havel by supporting the values of democracy and respect for human rights, assisting the development of civil society, and encouraging religious, cultural and ethnic tolerance. It provides a platform for global leaders, as well as thinkers and courageous individuals from every field of endeavor, to openly debate and share these critical issues.
The Forum 2000 was founded in 1996 as a joint initiative of the late Czech President Václav Havel, Japanese philanthropist Yohei Sasakawa, and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie Wiesel. Since 1997, Forum 2000 has organized fifteen annual conferences which have attracted a number of prominent thought leaders, Nobel laureates, former and acting politicians, business leaders and other individuals, whose common denominative is experience with bearing responsibility.