My interest in Charter 77 made me think differently
Doctor Morten Nielsen was born in Copenhagen in 1947, the son of a Danish communist and a German-Jewish refugee from Nazism. Because of his father’s ties to the Czechoslovak embassy, he visited Prague as a boy in the 1950s, but his views did not become clear until 1968, after the occupation of Czechoslovakia by the Soviet Union and its allies. Like many Danish intellectuals, he became involved in direct support for Czechoslovak dissidents during the last years of the communist era through his involvement in the support organisation Dialog med Charta 77. He collaborated with the Danish daily Politiken and its editors Herbert Pundik and Niels Barfoed, became acquainted with a large number of Czechoslovak dissidents and exiles, from František Janouch, through Karel Schwarzenberg and Vilém Prečan, to Jiří Hajek and Jiří Dienstbier, and participated in the activities of the committee of the Stockholm based Charter 77 Foundation. In 1988 he participated in an unsuccessful attempt to organise an international Helsinki conference in Prague with the participation of Czechoslovak dissent and other protest and support actions. He was interviewed in January 2023, when he participated in a public debate on Scandinavian support for the Czechoslovak democratic movement, organised by Post Bellum together with the Václav Havel Library.