自由派學者協會（VLA）主席Alexander Bagus補充：「在被處決之前，Arno Esch不僅為自由、人權和民主而戰，他還試圖保護他的朋友和同事。年紀輕輕就承擔了責任，不想給別人帶來傷害。我們在黃之鋒和他的同事身上認識到了這一切。黃和他的朋友們過去都意識到他們的抗爭可能會產生可怕的個人後果。儘管如此，他們並沒有被嚇倒，繼續前行。您非常值得獲得Arno-Esch獎。」
The ARNO-ESCH Prize 2020 is awarded this year to the Hong Kong student Nathan Law and his colleagues. The jury of the ARNO-ESCH Prize honors the courageous commitment of the students around Nathan Law and his colleagues for freedom, human rights and democracy in the fight against the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
In recent years, the CCP has not only violated Hong Kong’s international legal status, it has also gradually reduced or suspended its existing civil rights and liberties, including the democratic legal system. In the meantime, a number of students, but also many other citizens who have so far bravely stood up for the preservation of democracy and the rule of law in Hong Kong, are in custody. With the award, the jury is following the statement made by Arno Esch, who gave the award its name and a former student from Rostock: “A liberal Chinese is closer to me than a German communist.”
Well-deserved recognition with international significance
The jury’s decision to award the ARNO-ESCH Prize to Nathan Law and his colleagues is justified by the chairman, Prof. Dr. Günther Heydemann, with two motives: “On the one hand, it is about showing the fighters for democracy, the rule of law, human and civil rights in Hong Kong that they are not alone and that their commitment deserves recognition in every respect; On the other hand, it should be pointed out again that in Hong Kong there is an almost symbolic conflict between the values of democracy and the unvalues of a dictatorship, practiced by the Chinese Communist Party, which is of great international importance. The CCP is currently in the process of imposing its dictatorial regime on Hong Kong in order to eradicate freedom and democracy there. “
The President of the Association of Liberal Academics (VLA), Alexander Bagus, adds: “Up until his execution, Arno Esch not only campaigned for freedom, human rights and democracy, he also tried to protect his friends and colleagues. He took on responsibility at a young age and did not want to bring harm to others. We recognize all of this in Joshua Wong and his colleagues. Wong and his friends were and are aware that their resistance can have dire, personal consequences. Nevertheless, they were not intimidated and continued on their way. You are more than worthy of receiving the ARNO-ESCH Prize. “
The award ceremony took place on Saturday, August 14, 2021 at 1 pm at the Hilton Bonn, Berliner Freiheit 2, 53111 Bonn, in cooperation with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom.