Human rights activist Majed El Shafie, President and Founder of One Free World International, has been awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for his ongoing work fighting for freedom of religion and the rights of minorities around the world. El Shafie was surprised with the award at a One Free World International event in Toronto on July 22nd, attended by several Members of Parliament including Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party of Canada. The medal was presented by the Honourable Jason Kenney, P.C., M.P., Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism.
The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal is a new commemorative medal created to mark the 2012 celebrations of the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s accession to the Throne as Queen of Canada. The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal is a tangible way for Canada to honor Her Majesty for her service. At the same time, it serves to honor significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.
“Receiving this award is a true honor, and something I never would have imagined when I came to Canada ten years ago,” said El Shafie. “But the greatest award I have ever received is knowing that we have succeeded in raising awareness for human rights abuses around the world. To those that are suffering because of their religious beliefs, know that we will continue to fight. We will not leave one soul behind.”
El Shafie was arrested, tortured and sentenced to die in Egypt because of his Christian faith. Today, he lives in Canada and fights for those persecuted around the world through his human rights organization, One Free World International. Pressuring governments, and challenging both world and spiritual leaders, El Shafie has not been afraid to put everything on the line to help those in need. El Shafie and his work are the focus of the award-winning documentary Freedom Fighter (Destiny Image Films), which is now available on DVD.
Earlier this year, El Shafie led the very first Canadian delegation to visit the United States for the sole purpose of discussing freedom of religion and the rights of minorities around the world. The delegation included Members of Parliament and Senate as observers, who met with members of the U.S. Congress and other international officials to discuss the American and Canadian missions to Afghanistan and Iraq, relations with Egypt and Pakistan in light of the so-called "Arab Spring" and the ensuing threats to the state of Israel.
For more information, visit www.onefreeworldinternational.org.