Ilham Tohti Institute

For immediate Release CET 

17 June 2020 

Subject:  Mr. Uerkesh Davlet’s election as the Honorary President of the Board of Directors of the Ilham Tohti Institute

We are pleased to announce the recent election of Mr. Uerkesh Davlet as the honorary President of the Board of Directors of the Ilham Tohti Institute. Mr. Davlet, also known as Wu’er Kaixi in the world Media in 1989 as the former student leader of the “Beijing Tiananmen Student Movement“ is a well known human rights activist and a brave freedom fighter. We welcome Mr. Davlet on the Board whom we will be benefiting from his sound judgement, political experience and wisdom.

He was one of the founders of the former Ilham Tohti Initiative in Munich, Germany in 2016. Mr. Davlet, in his capacity as a student leader of the “Beijing Tiananmen Student Movement“ in an open letter sent to the members of the European Parliament, where he called them to choose imprisoned Uyghur academic Ilham Tohti for the Sakharov Award for “Freedom of Thought“ in 2016. Finally, Ilham Tohti was awarded the Sakharov Prize in 2019. The Ilham Tohti Initiative was also instrumental in proposing Ilham Tohti for the Sakharov, Vaclav Havel and some other international human rights Awards.

 “This courageous and brave, young Uyghur man was my inspiration and pride“ says Mr. Enver Can, President of the newly renamed Ilham Tohti Institute, recalling his memory of three decades ago: “I was working for the Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty as a journalist when I first saw Mr. Davlet’s photo with the former CCP Leader Li Peng and reported about the demands of the pro Democracy students in Beijing 31 years ago“.

When the Ilham Tohti Initiative was renamed to become Ilham Tohti Institute, Mr. Davlet was invited to be a member of the Board of Directors on the 21st of April 2020 and subsequently he was elected as the honorary President of the Board of Directors.

Mr. Davlet must play a leading role in the Uyghur diaspora movement, says Mr. Can, who had repeatedly urged him to join Uyghur NGOs and calls on other Uyghur Organizations to make use of his experience and reputation in the world. Especially now, as the Chinese Government have been implementing a policy of cultural genoocide on the entire Uyghur population, he said, “We, the Uyghur nation and the cause need many more Ilhams and Uerkeshs“ !


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