The National Agency for Higher Education Quality Assurance (NAQA) is grateful to the organizations and colleagues who responded to our March Appeal to the global academic community!
The third month Ukraine is on fire, 75 days Ukrainians defend basic human values and rights: the right to life, education, work in a free, independent country where there is no place for autocracy, rashism, total propaganda and censorship. Our colleagues, students, friends, compatriots are dying for the truth, for freedom, for independence, for democratic values, for the future not only of Ukraine, but also of Europe and the whole civilized world. United against one enemy, each of us is a warrior on his front: soldiers on the front and in the rear, diplomats, volunteers, medics, rescuers, educators, researchers.
In Ukraine thousands of schools and hundreds of universities’ buildings are wiped out, dozens of museums and theatres are bombed and totally destroyed, millions of pupils and students are forced to hide in bomb shelters and basements or to flee, thousands of professors and students die in war, hundreds of educators and researchers are tortured and murdered … this is done by russians … at the same time russian propaganda machine has the support of more than 70% of the russia’s population. Teachers and scientists are among them. University lecturers operate with fictional and knowingly false facts about the war in Ukraine. The russian rectors openly supported russia’s war against Ukraine. This is crime against humanity! Education is used as a mouthpiece for the propaganda of violence. This is not a quality of higher education – this is a mockery of education.
After the full-scale invasion of Ukraine by russia, a lot of international associations stopped or suspended the membership of russian scientists and organizations. The same is done by hundreds of international cultural, sport, scientific and other organizations and events. Estonia, Latvia, Canada, and Lithuania have already recognized russia’s actions in Ukraine as genocide, and the Lithuanian Seimas has recognized russia as a terrorist state. Gradually, the nations of the world have begun to call a spade a spade.
Unfortunately, representatives of russian academic society either support putin’s war crime in Ukraine or are silent. There is evidence the higher education in russia doesn’t fulfill its key function – to ensure that educated people share humanity value, have critical thinking and are prepared to be proactive citizens in democratic society. We strongly believe that even a silence is a very loud and clear position against the peace and humanity not only in Ukraine, but also in the whole world. In such case russian academic society should be isolated from a civilized democratic world.
NAQA appeals to all international educational organizations, to INQAAHE, to CEENQA, to all foreign colleagues, to all like-minded colleagues and soulmates who share values of humanity and right to life to isolate russians, to deprive of russia’s member status, to demonstrate that there is no place for violence in civilized world. Russian academia should understand they are accomplices of the putin’s war crime. If they are not, they should scream about it to the whole world, they should stop their bloody murderers, they should educate russian population to have critical thinking, to respect other people’s right for life and democratic values.
Approved by the National Agency on May 10, 2022.