Annan praises Elie Wiesel on 75th birthday as staunch defender of the victimized
In a tribute given yesterday at the Anti-Defamation League’s gala celebration of the 1986 Nobel Peace Laureate’s seventy-fifth birthday, Mr. Annan said through his unforgettable books on the Holocaust and “the face of absolute horror,” Mr. Wiesel had done as much as anyone else to raise public awareness of the plague of anti-Semitism.
“It is that combination of eloquence and empathy that led me to ask him to become a United Nations Messenger of Peace,” Mr. Annan said of the Romanian-born author and journalist.
The collective conscience, on which Mr. Wiesel had made a historic and profound imprint, could not help but be deeply troubled by violence and injustice in the Middle East, by divisions on so many issues, by despair in so many places, he said. These challenges had solutions only when people’s consciences were duly aroused.
“Elie, the world needs you to carry on doing what you do best. And that is to speak out, build bridges and raise the alarm about the wrongs afflicting our world,” Mr. Annan said.