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Steve McQueen becomes patron of historic anti-slavery organisation

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Feb 05, 2014 | 4:43am EST

12 Years A Slave director Steve Mcqueen has been made a patron of the world's oldest human rights organisation. The British filmmaker will act as an ambassador for Anti-Slavery International, a U.K.-based committee set up in 1839 to lobby against slavery and related abuses. He met with officials at the organisation's headquarters in London on Monday (03Feb14) and declared his intention to highlight the importance of working against modern-day slavery across the globe. Referring to the hero of his Oscar-tipped movie, Solomon Northup, the free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in 1841, he said, "Right now, there are Solomon Northups in every region of the world who have been taken away from their families and placed in slavery. "I hope that, 150 years from now, a film will not be made about our ambivalence to slavery. We have to do something about it." He also hosted a private viewing of the movie for Britain's Members of Parliament, and urged politicians to add Northup's book about his terrible experiences to the curriculum in U.K. schools.

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