The Swedish schoolgirl Greta Thunberg, an activist for climate change, and the movement build up from the ranks of secondary school pupils and students Fridays for Future, have been given the 2019 Amnesty International Ambassador of Conscience award, the human rights organisation announced on Friday.
Created in 2002, the Ambassador of Conscience award rewards those who, individually or collectively, “have advanced the cause of human rights by following their conscience, standing up to injustice and making use of their talents to encourage others to act,” Amnesty International explained.
The Fridays for Future movement was launched by Greta Thunberg, a Swedish teenager who decided in August 2018 to ditch school every Friday to protest in front of the Swedish Parliament until it took strong measures to combat climate disruption. Her initiative to make people aware of the climate crisis spread like wildfire. On May 24, more than a million young people throughout the world took part in a day of school strikes in support of Fridays for Future. Demonstrations took place in over 100 countries.
Amnesty International is inviting states to strengthen significantly the measures being taken in support of the climate, while respecting human rights.
Previous recipients of the award include Nelson Mandela, Malala Yousafzai, Harry Belafonte, Ai Weiwei, Alicia Keys and Colin Kaepernick.