The candle burns not for us, but for all those whom we failed to rescue from prison, who were shot on the way to prison, who were tortured, who were kidnapped, who "disappeared". That's what the candle is for
Once the concentration camps and the hell-holes of the world were in darkness. Now they are lit by the light of the Amnesty candle; the candle in barbed wire. When I first lit the Amnesty candle, I had in mind the old Chinese proverb: 'Better light a candle than curse the darkness.'
Open your newspaper - any day of the week - and you will find a report from somewhere in the world of someone being imprisoned, tortured or executed because his opinions or religion are unacceptable to his government.
Its the publicity function of Amnesty that I think has made its name so widely known, not only to readers in the world, but to governments - and thats what matters.
Pressure of opinion a hundred years ago brought about the emancipation of the slaves'.
Those who today still feel a sense of impotence can do something: they can support Amnesty International. They can help it to stand up for freedom and justice.
Torture is banned but in two-thirds of the world's countries it is still being committed in secret. Too many governments still allow wrongful imprisonment, murder or "disappearance" to be carried out by their officials with impunity.
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