Thor Halvorssen has been one of the world’s best respected human rights activists for a number of years after beginning his career as a student and shocking established activists with his knowledge and passion. It was during his time as a student at the University of Pennsylvania that Thor Halvorssen began his work as a human rights acitivist, initially in a bid to help his father escape his own incarceration that was illegal on many different levels in their native Venezuela. Halvorssen has also seen many different members of his own family targeted because of their political decisions and stripped of their human rights in many different ways.
Pivotal moments in the life of Thor Halvorssen include witnessing the 74 day incarceration of his father and the shooting of his own mother when she took part in a political demonstration that opposed the rule of Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez. Halvorssen has gone on to found his own activism group, the Human Rights Foundation that has been led by the Russian activist Gary Kasparov for a number of years; the Human Rights Foundation does not look to work on cases in democratic countries but instead focuses on closed societies where human rights are stolen from citizens on a regular basis.
In his work as an activist Thor Halvorssen has chosen to align himself with groups that are battling the most evil tyrants on the planet, including the Russian group “Pussy Riot”. It is not common for activist group leaders to place their own health on the line when they are looking to publicize the work they are bringing to the attention of the public; however, Thor Halvorssen has been known ton place his own body in the firing line as was seen in a trip he took to Vietnam to interview a political prisoner of over two decades. The reasons for Halvorssen’s visit to Vietnam were eventually discovered by the authorities who viciously beat both he and his camera operator in a bid to get hold of the tape of an interview Thor conducted earlier in his visit to the country.