The OsloMet community is heartbroken over the suffering and loss of life the world has been witness to in recent months.
We strongly condemn the state of Israel's brutal attack on civilians and civilian infrastructure. There are no excuses for the atrocities we witness unfolding. These are by no means proportionate reactions to the attacks by Hamas in Israel, which we also condemn.
We must achieve an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.
Our thoughts are with all the innocent individuals who are paying with their lives, suffering, and living in unimaginable fear.
OsloMet has partners in both Gaza and on the West Bank in Palestine and in Israel. We stand in solidarity with our students and colleagues at universities and research institutions who are enduring an unbearable daily life.
Within our university, we have many students and staff members facing challenging circumstances. They may have lost family members, friends, and colleagues in their home country or fear for their lives.
It is crucial that we see and support each other with care.
The role of educational institutions in a time of war
During times like these, when it is easy to lose faith in peaceful coexistence and peaceful solutions to conflicts, the importance of educational institutions becomes abundantly clear.
Schools, universities, and research institutions all have a vital role to play as democratic and inclusive arenas for the pursuit of knowledge and sites of academic inquiry.
Norway is a co-architect of the UN Safe Schools Declaration (regjeringen.no). The declaration gives governments an opportunity to express broad political support for the protection and maintenance of free education under conditions armed conflict.
The declaration also allows states to commit to the Guidelines on Protecting Schools and Universities from Military Use during Armed Conflict (icrc.org).
These guidelines call on all parties to armed conflicts to refrain from using schools and universities to support their military efforts in any way or as a measure intended to deprive the opposing parties in an armed conflict of the ability to use them in the future.
OsloMet wishes to emphasize the importance of adhering to the Safe Schools Declaration and the Guidelines on Protecting Schools and Universities.
Christen Krogh, OsloMet Rector
OsloMet's research collaborations in Israel and Palestine
- ANERIS (aneris.eu)
- Exploring Quality of Maternal and Newborn Care in Palestine (EqualMatPal)
- Key Inclusive Development Strategies for Life-Long Learning (KIDS4ALLL)
- Midwifery Research and Education Development (NORHEDII)
- Practices and policies of belonging among minority and majority children of low-income families (BELONG)
- The E-Pal Project (NORHEDII) - LINK – Centre for Learning, Innovation & Academic Development (uio.no)