A Turkish-American professional basketball player and an outspoken human rights activist Enes Kanter Freedom received the 2022 Geneva summit Courage Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution in defence of human rights, in particular, “heroic efforts to sound the alarm” about China’s brutal human rights abuses. Enes Freedom accepted the award on behalf of “all human rights defenders across the world”.
Tibet was “first topic” to speak out following ten years of raising his voice against dictatorial situation in his home country-Turkey. Shortly after adding his voice in support of Tibet, the Chinese authorities pulled off broadcasting Boston Celtics games in Chinese media which “clearly” exposed “how much they (Chinese authorities) are scared off”, said Freedom at the summit.
Enes Freedom who sacrificed his professional career started to add his voice publicly in support of Tibet by wearing “Free Tibet” shoes. The NBA begged him to take the shoes off, said Enes Freedom at the Summit. Following his human rights activism, Enes lost all contact with his teammate, whom we looked upon as his brothers and family, but he found “a new family”-human rights heroes, said Enes Freedom at the Summit.
Responding to media quires on his message to the Chinese government upon receiving the award, Enes Freedom said “What is happening in Tibet is cultural genocide, China needs to know Tibet Belongs to the Tibetan people”. The world will be free from war, if all the leaders listen to the “beautiful message” of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. His Holiness the Dalai Lama inspired him to “stand up for right, truth, freedom and human rights’ ‘, Enes Freedom responded to the media.
Representative Chhimey Rigzen of the Tibet Bureau presented a Tibetan traditional white scarf and thanked Enes Kanter for his support for Tibet and other people who are forcibly silenced by the totalitarian regime, following the award ceremony.