Last month, the Ministry tried to impose its view on candidates running for the position of a coordinator of the Students Council in Kiev. The candidates were summoned to meetings with government representatives and were threatened to be expelled from university if they would not support the Ministry’s point of view.
The Ukrainian Students Union UASS speaks of ‘educational talks’ and likens the approach to popular intimidation techniques from the Soviet era.
The voice of positive change
The European Students’ Union (ESU) is appalled by the Ministry of Education and Science’s attempt to influence the work of Ukraine’s student bodies. ESU trusts that the international society and institutions such as the Council of Europe will ensure that Ukraine will follow the rules of the playing field.
“Ukraine is a part of the European Higher Education Area and a member of the Council of Europe. Ukrainian authorities must ensure that students and all citizens enjoy their democratic rights and freedom of expression. Students are the voices of positive changes. They should always be listened to and be involved in the decision making process”, says Karina Ufert, ESU’s Chairperson.
Stop the threats
Ukrainian students have submitted a joint call to President Yanukovych to take action against the Ministerial threats. ESU supports that call and demands that all attempts to control student organizations, such as the Students Council in Kiev, will be stopped.
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