Regional meeting on the role of universities in peacebuilding held in Sarajevo
The Norwegian Helsinki Committee held a regional meeting in Sarajevo about the program Build Bridges not Walls that has been
initiated at the universities in Bosnia & Herzegovina and Serbia.
The aim of the meeting was to discuss the role of the universities in peacebuilding with all interested parties in the program, including university professors, student union representatives and NGOs.
28 prominent guests from Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia and Norway, with an expertise in the field of education, intercultural understanding, human rights and reconciliation took part in the meeting, as well as representatives of the Helsinki Committees in Bosnia & Herzegovina and Serbia.
Prof. Enver Kazaz from the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Sarajevo, Prof. Nerzuk Ćurak from the Faculty of Political Sciences of the University of Sarajevo and Prof. Nebojša Petrović from the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Belgrade made speeches on the current state of the academy with relation to peacebuilding and its future perspectives.
Enver Djuliman, the Head of Human Rights Education Department in the Norwegian Helsinki Committee presented the program Build Bridges not Walls and emphasized the importance of the role of the universities in peacebuilding. This program is to be implemented during a period of three years. The main activity of the program is to introduce a one-semester subject on intercultural understanding, human rights and peacebuilding for both regular students of humanities and students of other backgrounds who find this education important for their work. Prof. Lars Petter Soltvedt from Norway introduced the participants with successful implementation of this subject at the Buskerud University College with support of the Norwegian Helsinki Committee.
In the end, the participants discussed about current practices and challenges of the pilot subject introduced at the Faculty of Educational Sciences of the University of Sarajevo and Faculty of Humanities of the University “Dzemal Bijedic” in Mostar. They agreed about importance of the program “Build Bridges not Walls” and expressed their support to it.