Last week I was privileged to attend the Oslo Freedom Forum, described by the Economist as the “Davos of Human Rights”. I travelled to Oslo with one of the speakers, West Papua independence leader, Benny Wenda, who I am currently making a documentary about.

Titled “Out of Darkness, Into Light” the event was billed as bringing together some of the most daunting humanitarian issues of our time out of the shadows of obscurity and to the forefront of global awareness. Highlights included speeches from Saudi Arabian female activist Manal Al-Sharif who helped start a women’s right to drive campaign in 2011, and Andrew Feinstein’s insight into the global arms trade.

I met some truly inspirational people including exiled Ethiopian journalist Abebe Gellaw. He now lives in exile in the US after being found guilty of terrorism charges in his homeland. Abebe is the founder of Addis Voice, a web platform that provides news that is otherwise censored by the Ethiopian government. He also created Addis Multimedia Proxy Toolbar, an online tool that circumvents government censorship. Meeting Abebe reminded me of the level of discontent that Ethiopians expressed about the Meles Zenawi regime when I was there earlier this year. Hopefully change will come to the country soon.

Benny Wenda’s speech was really well received. You watch it on the link below