Ven. Wangchen poses with Nobel laureate Adolfo Pérez Esquivel
Barcelona, July 25 - Mr. Adolfo Pérez Esquivel, the 1980 Nobel Peace Prize winner visited the Tibet House Foundation in Barcelona on Thursday, July 23, and expressed his support to the Tibetan cause.
He was always very supportive to the cause of Tibet and very close friend of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, said Ven Thubten Wangchen, who welcomed Mr. Pérez to the Tibet House.
He sat down with the director of the foundation, Ven. Thubten Wangchen, discussing the present situation of Tibet and concerns about the Tibet’s volatile ecology and its destruction by the Chinese government, among other issues.
Ven. Wangchen said he was very honored to spend his time with the Nobel laureate.
“Mr. Adolfo Pérez was so gentle, simple & sympathetic. We felt so happy to be able to share some time with him,” said Ven. Wangchen.
Adolfo Pérez Esquivel was born in Buenos Aires in 1931. After training as an architect and sculptor he worked as a Professor of Architecture. He is noted for leading protests against the Free Trade Area of the Americas and for bringing attention to Argentine police forming children into paramilitary squads, an operation he compares to the creation of Nazi Germany's Hitler Youth.
In the 1960s, Pérez Esquivel began working with popularly based Latin American Christian pacifist groups. In 1974 he decided to relinquish his teaching job as he was chosen coordinator general for a network of Latin America-based communities promoting liberation of the poor through non-violent means.
In 1975, Esquivel was detained by the Brazilian military police; he was jailed in 1976 in Ecuador, along with Latin American and North American bishops; in 1977 in Buenos Aires he was arrested by the Policía Federal, tortured, and held without trial for 14 months. Whilst incarcerated, he received — among other distinctions — the Pope John XXIII Peace Memorial award. In 1980 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts in the defense of human rights.