Versión en español (CLIC)
Total repudiation to the violence in the world's universities
NICOLAS ENRIQUE ZULETA HINCAPIE
National Principal of “Libre” University
Bogota D.C. April, 23th 2015. The University must be a center for a peaceful coexistence, for the development of creativity, space for the construction of scientific knowledge, inspired by the fundamental human freedoms and especially for academic freedom, teaching, learning and expression of thought to build fair, pluralistic and tolerant societies.
The international community recorded with regret the slaughter of university students at the University of Garissa in Kenya. Such an act of barbarism deserves our condemnation. From the “Libre” University we express total rejection against any violent act committed against the institutions of the University as intellectual training center, spaces for spiritual growth and peaceful coexistence of People. An attack on academic and scientific community anywhere in the world is the fullest expression of barbarism and run against the essential mission of the “alma mater”.
At the “Libre” University, deeply regret the violence at the University of Garissa, send greetings of solidarity and comfort to the directors of the University and the families of the victims, making an urgent call to the international community, to react vigorously against these acts of violence, to end fanaticism, respect for individual freedoms and the pursuit of rational differences through dialogues.
The slaughter of 148 students leads us to a deep reflection of the state of barbarism in armed conflict because of religious ideals and demands social responses as those that generated the tragedies of the French newspaper Charlie Hebdo and the attack at the museum in Tunisia where two Colombian compatriots died. In the same way, the urgent call for solidarity to stop the destruction of important artworks of the cultural heritage of nations.
Our duty is to break the indifference to this brutal act of genocide, doubly reprehensible for the amount of helpless victims and also for being a university.
We reiterate the call for the academic and scientific community, nationally and internationally, to close ranks repudiating these violent acts, to generate actions for peace and ensure a climate that allows us to make possible the mission of the university as a space for freedom, creativity, the development of science and critical thinking. Universities must remain being the peace scenarios, spaces for recognition of partners and affirmation of different expressions of universal thought to enable the advancement of civilizing ideals of the people.