Protect Universities from Attack

26. 4. 2015
Following the terrorist attack that unfolded at Garissa University College in Kenya on Thursday 2 April killing 147 students and leaving at least 79 people wounded, the European University Association invites all European universities to observe a minute's silence on Monday 27 April 2015 (12:00 CET) in remembrance of all those killed in and affected by the attack on Garissa and by other attacks on universities and university values around the world.

While the events in Garissa stand out in their barbarity, we would like to draw attention to the appalling reality that attacks continue to happen every day.

In doing so, EUA reaffirms its belief that any act of violence or attack on education runs counter to the fundamental university values of freedom of thought and expression, tolerance and autonomy and undermines the ambition and fundamental right of any young person to gain qualifications and make a contribution to their nation, society and the world.

Attacks on universities, their students and scholars weaken or obliterate academic freedom; have a devastating impact on research, teaching and access to education; and impair society’s long-term development. Safeguarding the freedom and safety of universities and university communities is therefore pivotal in ensuring the advancement of knowledge and the cultural and scientific development of mankind.

The pursuit of knowledge has no boundaries and universities transcend geographical and political frontiers. In keeping with the principles of the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack it endorsed in January, EUA therefore calls on universities across Europe and beyond to unite in solidarity in condemning any form of violence against education. It further appeals to the international community to take action to protect universities from attacks and prevent them from happening in the future.

Brussels, April 2015

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