OPEN LETTER FROM THE UKRAINIAN ACADEMIC COMMUNITY TO THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION, THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION AND EVERY MEMBER-STATE COUNTRY
On 24th of February 2022 at 5:00 a.m. President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin officially expanded the war against Ukraine that has been conducted for the last 8 years. War against the entire democratic civilization, violating peace agreements in Europe gained after World War II.
Russian military aggression is not only a threat to territorial integrity, independence and sovereignty of Ukraine, but it is a global threat to the world order, democratic values and freedoms, including academic freedom, university autonomy and research integrity. War in Europe is a tremendous danger to sustainable development and ecology for all countries in Europe, not only for Ukraine. Just think about the global damage which can be caused by the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant which was attacked and occupied by Russians and since then all the facilities, including “Shelter” are no longer under the supervision and Ukrainian researchers do not have control over them. It is high time to stand for peace and democracy! Today, we cannot imagine further international cooperation with the Russian public institutions and universities in higher education and research on the systemic and institutional levels.
We cannot imagine further funding research and educational projects within the EU funds supporting the Russian Federation, including:
- HEU – Horizon Europe,
- Erasmus+ – European Commission’s Programme for education, training, youth, and sport,
- ERC – European Research Council,
- ITER – International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor,
- CERN – European Organization for Nuclear Research,
- EEN – Enterprise Europe Network,
- EUREKA – Intergovernmental Organisation for Research and Development Funding and Coordination,
- COST – European Cooperation in Science and Technology
Research infrastructure initiatives (XFEL – European X-Ray Free-Electron Laser Facility, FAIR – Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research, ITER – the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor, etc.)
It would be a gross violation of all fundamental academic values and freedoms. We cannot imagine free academic dialogue and unbiased discussions with Russian institutions. Russian universities are not and have never been independent of the Russian government. They have always followed state Russian propaganda, and there is no place for freedom of science, freedom of speech, freedom of learning and teaching.
We call on the European Commission to urgently suspend all kinds of international collaboration with Russian institutions on the systemic and institutional level, to stop funding research and educational projects with the Russian institutions, to suspend membership in the international organization until the war would be stopped. The European Union cannot provide funding to the institutions subordinated to Putin’s regime anymore if the EU acts based on the declared values pointed at EU Treaties.
We call the European Parliament, which is the heart of EU nations to support Ukrainian scientists in our struggle, struggle about future of science and education, future of whole Europe making all possible decisions as quick as it is possible to deny access for all Russian institutions to EU funds at least for the near financial perspective, which will be implemented in 2021-2027. With the possibility of continuation until we will have freedom and peace in Europe with Ukraine.
We call on the Council of the European Union to suspend all kinds of international collaboration with Russian institutions on the national levels – bilateral research and educational projects, mobility programs, other activities in scientific and educational spheres until the war would be stopped. Aggressors and dictators can’t be European partners, and we believe that Your nations understand this much better as part of the EU and UN.
We ask the academic community to show solidarity and fight for academic values and relevant science, which cannot be a war, for the peaceful and stable future of the whole world together with Ukraine