PUBLISHED: 22:33 GMT, 11 March 2012 | UPDATED: 23:47 GMT, 11 March 2012
My background gives me a unique insight into the reality of human rights. I was born into a Jewish family in Budapest in 1943 and I am lucky to be one of the youngest survivors of the Holocaust.
As an infant in Hungary under Nazi occupation, my life was saved when a deal was done with Hitler’s monstrous henchmen in the SS, Heinrich Himmler and Adolf Eichmann. The lives of 20 Jewish families were spared in return for ransom money.
I was among those spared, while 20,000 others were put on trains for gas chambers of Auschwitz.
It was an experience that led me to fight for human rights all my life, as reflected, for example, during my work during the Vietnam War in the 1960s when I liaised with the International Red Cross to prevent humanitarian abuses.
Hitler’s henchmen: Heinrich Himmler, left, and Adolf Eichmann, right, did a deal that condemned thousands of Jewish families to death
I know what the abuse of human rights really means. It is certainly not the kind of nonsense we hear so much about today – parents smacking children, the eviction of travellers from illegal encampments or the deportation of foreign criminals in breach of their supposed ‘right to a family life’.