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The University’s responsibilites

The world must strongly condemn the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russia’s irresponsible and inhuman behavior is completely unacceptable and puts the whole world in a very dangerous situation.

Bildet kan inneholde: bukse, yttertøy, dagtid, frakk, mote.

Photo: Marilla Sicilia/Mondadori Portfolio/Sipa USA/NTB

It is extremely frightening that one of the world’s most powerful nations, with large arsenals of conventional and nuclear weapons, acts in this way. The consequences for Ukraine are immense. The Russian regime and the Kremlin are putting the Ukrainian population through vast suffering. Refugees are already crossing the borders of Poland, Romania, and other countries, and this is only the beginning. All of Europe, and each one of us, must contribute in this situation. 

A main task for the University of Oslo, in the coming days and weeks, is to take care of our students and employees. We have been in contact with the small number of students we have in Russia. We are following up our Ukrainian students, and we are contacting those of our students who are based in countries bordering to Ukraine and Belarus. They will receive the support they need. 

Strong condemnation of Russia’s behavior and adamant support to Ukraine must not lead us into a trap where we stigmatize individuals. There are strong and brave voices in the Russian population protesting the invasion. It is important not to blame the people of Russia for the violent attack on their neighboring country. This is a war driven by Kremlin. We applaud our many academic colleagues who are putting themselves in a difficult and dangerous situation by standing up to Kremlin. We have many Russian employees and students. We will also ensure their well-being. 

The situation will also have consequences for research and other academic cooperation. We will come back with clear messaging on this, hopefully within a day or two. 

In the coming weeks, we must help academics and students from Ukraine. Many are in a very vulnerable position. One of many serious concerns is that the possibility of traveling to and from Ukraine is, of course, very limited. We must be prepared to do what we can, to give support and to help. We will discuss with our faculties how best to do this, but exchange students from Ukraine must be granted admission to our regular study programmes, and fleeing students must receive help. We must also consider how best to help Ukrainian colleagues in need. 

We will continue dialogue internationally, as well as with academic colleagues in Norway and abroad. We must stand united against this unstable and erratic Russian regime.

Av Svein Stølen
Publisert 28. feb. 2022 14:55 - Sist endret 3. mars 2022 14:34
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