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Thursday 23 October  

International prize for Dutch diplomat

Published on 2 July 2011 - 5:26pm
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Dutch diplomat Caecilia Wijgers has been honoured for her commitment to promoting democracy in Cuba.

The Dutch foreign ministry announced on Saturday that Ms Wijgers received the first Palmer Prize for Diplomats during a ministerial conference on democracy in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius.

The Palmer Prize - named after a former US ambassador to Hungary - was created to honour diplomats who under difficult circumstances continue to fight for democracy in the country where they have been stationed.

Between 2005 and 2009, Ms Wijgers fought for freedom of speech and free access to information for civil society, journalists and human rights activists in Cuba. She was the then deputy ambassador to Cuba.

Ms Wijgers said she was honoured to receive the Palmer Prize: “Through its human rights strategy, the Netherlands invests worldwide in basic rights such as the freedom of speech and access to information, but fundamental changes can only take place with the active support of the local population. As a diplomat, there is a variety of ways in which you can stimulate that process.”

(gsh/rk)

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

Discussion

Anonymous 4 July 2011 - 7:52pm / USA

But surely you jest... Palmer was the most corrupt US ambassador that Hungary has ever seen who resigned his post to pursue his "business interests" in the "privatization" bonanza of Hungary. Only an 'Al Capone Prize for Democracy' would be more ridiculous.

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