ITF EU Representative, Dr. Hassan Aydinli, attended the International Seminar on the situation of the IRAQI ACADEMICS – Ghent University

March 14, 2011 at 11:48 am | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
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Merry Fitzgerald, Count Hans-Christof von Sponeck, Mrs. von Sponeck, Dr. Hassan Aydinli

Hans von Sponeck is a former UN Assistant Secretary General, he was appointed the UN humanitarian coordinator for Iraq in October 1998, Count Sponeck resigned from his position in February 2000 in protest of international policy towards Iraq.

Dr. Souad Al-Azzawi, Former Vice-President of Mamoun University of Scientific Affairs, Former professor of environmental engineering at Baghdad University – Dr. Hassan Aydinli, ITF EU Representative, and two other participants.


Dr. Hassan Aydinli, Gibson McGuire and Nawal Abdullah

Gibson McGuire is one of the world’s leading authorities on ancient Mesopotamia.  He was part of a National Geographic delegation visiting Iraq to inspect archaeological sites in 2003. He also has provided expert advice to UNESCO and other cultural and scholarly organizations working to preserve the archaeological heritage of Iraq.

In this photo from left to right: Raymond W. Baker, Hans von Sponeck, Lieven de Cauter


Raymond W. Baker: Professor of International Politics, Trinity College, USA, and adjunct Professor of Political Science at the American University in Cairo

Lieven de Cauter: Professor at Louvain University, Belgium. President of the BRussells Tribunal


ITF EU Representative, Dr. Hassan Aydinli, attended  the International Seminar on the situation of the IRAQI ACADEMICS – Defending education in times of war and occupation –March 9/10/11 – Ghent University, Belgium.

The aim of the seminar is to draw international attention to the ongoing criminal violence against Iraqi academics, to situate this violence within the wider dynamics of the ongoing occupation of Iraq, and to work towards practical remedies.


Under US occupation, Iraq’s intellectual and technical class has been subject to a systematic and ongoing campaign of intimidation, abduction, extortion, random killings and targeted assassinations. Running parallel with the destruction of Iraq’s educational infrastructure, this repression has led to the mass displacement of the bulk of Iraq’s educated middle class. The consequences for Iraq’s social, economic and political reconstruction are grave.

Now, in the eighth year of a US occupation that shows few signs of ending, the BRussells Tribunal and the Middle East and North Africa Research Group (MENARG) of the Ghent University call for renewed attention to the situation of Iraqi higher education and academic life, stressing its importance to the rebuilding of the country, and the well-being of its people.

This seems particularly urgent given the devastating impact of the occupation upon key sectors such as higher education and research.

Accordingly, the urgent task of the proposed seminar is not only to give reasons for the destruction of Iraqi academia, but also to propose ways of rebuilding it, highlighting both the duty of international organizations to respond, and the responsibility of educators around the globe to show solidarity with their Iraqi colleagues.

Only Iraqis can rebuild Iraq: Only their competence, integrity and independence can guarantee Iraq’s sovereignty, and ensure a peaceful and prosperous future. Iraq’s educators are vital to this future.


See video :

To sign the Ghent Charter in Defense of Iraqi Academia please click on:

Read this petition in Arabic


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