Aayat Alqormozi is awarded the Student Peace Prize 2015

Aayat Alqormozi is awarded the Student Peace Prize 2015

Aayat Alqormozi receives the Student Peace Prize for her strenuously battle for democracy and human rights in Bahrain, according to the leader of the Peace Committee, Jørn Wichne Pedersen. In the aftermath of the Arab Spring, Alqormozi was arrested and imprisoned after she publicly preformed a poem of freedom on the Pearle Square in Manama. The poem criticized the governance to the regime in Bahrain, and demanded that the King, Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa, should give equal rights to both Shi´ites and Sunnis. After the poetry reading, Aayat Alqormozi was expelled from the university, mistreated and imprisoned. The strength to fight against oppression and violence – withouth using the same methods – shows an admirable devotion to the road of peace. The committee wrote in their justification; “By raising her voice again, even after being imprisoned, tortured, assaulted, threatened and expelled from her university, Aayat has shown exceptional courage that should inspire students from all over the world.” The protests in Bahrain...
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Peace Project in Croatia: Prejudice Reduction through Renovation

Peace Project in Croatia: Prejudice Reduction through Renovation

Just before the beginning of the semester, a small group of volunteers from ISFiT Peace Project travelled to Croatia to visit the winner of the Student Peace Prize in 2011, Duško Kostic. Kostic is one of two former winners that the Peace Project have chosen to focus on for next year’s project. The main task of the Peace Project is to make active and specific projects to support the work of previous winners. In his hometown Beli Manastir, in eastern Croatia, he is working actively to integrate Roma people into society. He does this by communicating the importance of participating in society through education and work. Kostic works between people, and acts as a middle man between the Roma and the authorities of their city. During the last twelve years he has worked in his own organization, LUNA. He struggles, however, with an office in bad condition. It is both small and worn. Kostic want more space to have room for private...
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Duško Kostić

Duško Kostić

The Croatian student Duško Kostić was awarded The Student Peace Prize of 2011 for his work concerning the Roma people’s rights. Through education and educational work Kostic tries to build bridges and understanding between the different ethnic groups in a country, which was formerly devastated by war. People look at him as a representative for the Roma people in his village Beli Manastir. Duško Kostić works and lives in Croatia. The country still struggles from the consequences of the conflict between Serbia and Croatia in the 1990s. In 2008, the population of Croatia consisted of 89 % Croatians, 4.5 % Serbs and the remaining 6.5 % of Bosnians, Hungarians, Czechs, Slovaks and the Roma. The relationship between the different ethnic groups is still highly influenced by the mentality and prejudices that were formed during the war. Members of ethnic groups often experience stigmatization because of their ethnicity, especially in the educational system. The Roma people in the rest of Europe are often...
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Corruption challenges students’ democratic elections in Colombia

Corruption challenges students’ democratic elections in Colombia

The students in Colombia are still struggling their battle for their rights to freedom, democracy and public education. They experience threats, assaults and corruption in their battle against paramilitary groups. The Colombian Student Organization ACEU was awarded the Student Peace Prize in their work for, amongst other things, document and systematize these conditions. They now hope that the Student Peace Price will enlighten their situation connected to a democratic election for students in Sucre. Ana Paola Romero received the Student Peace Prize in 2005 on behalf of ACEU. She is running for election as a student representative for the state university in Sucre. A student representative is an important role in the university, and therefore politicians want to control the position. Ana Paoli accuses her opponent to receive votes bought from corrupt politicians in exchange for the candidate´s loyalty. The administration manages the university´s resources after other interests than the students´, and ACEU works to defeat this administration. The politicians want to...
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Follow up seminar with ZINASU

Follow up seminar with ZINASU

“There are two kinds of ZINASU-members. Those who attended the seminar and those who didn’t”. These are the words of Avoid Masiraha, national spokesman for ZINASU, the 2003 laureates of the Student Peace Prize. Nearly 12 years later, ZINASU and ISFiT still maintain close cooperation. Despite years of political decline, the student union is still a vibrant political force in Zimbabwe. Early in January 2015, the Peace Prize Project team held a seminar for ZINASU in Zimbabwe. Intended approach The intention with the seminar was to provide a platform for the members to discuss communication, working methods and security. Under no circumstances was The Peace Prize Project team to provide answers to the difficult topics discussed during the seminar, nor was this our intention. The Peace Prize Project rather sought to encourage the students in ZIANSU to exchange ideas amongst themselves. “The best thing was the interactive engagements, we were not taught, but given the tools to teach ourselves”- Joceelynn Hlimana. Focusing on core values...
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Former winner of the Student Peace Price take legal action against dictator

Former winner of the Student Peace Price take legal action against dictator

Grace Mugabes PhD in Philosophy from the University of Zimbabwe, only months after being accepted in the course, has received international attention. Her husband and president of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, has ruled the nation with an iron fist the last decades. He has been in power since 1980 and is also the head of the university. As a result, there have been widespread speculations concerning his role in awarding the degree.   Power struggle Grace received the PhD only months after her acceptance into the ruling party, ZANU-PF. Lately the party has suffered from inner conflicts and disagreements. Robert Mugabe turned 90 this year and multiple factions within the ruling party are now opposing each other, competing for positions and whickering over who is to become his successor. Many therefore suspect the PhD to be of a strategic character, aimed at strengthening Grace’s candidate. Students take legal action Winner of the Student Peace Prize in 2003, ZINASU, the largest student union in Zimbabwe have...
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Zimbabwe National Student Union

Zimbabwe National Student Union

Zimbabwe National Student Union (ZINASU) was awarded the Student Peace Prize in 2003 for their struggle for student rights and democracy. In the violent, non-democratic regime of Robert Mugabe, students face oppression and opposition every day because Mugabe considers students and their education as a threat. Educational crisis in Zimbabwe In Zimbabwe, student organizations are viewed as a dangerous opposition to the regime. The students’ that fights for their rights are therefore counteracted with all means. Despite this the students of Zimbabwe have not stopped fighting, demonstrating and working to better their situation. Zimbabwe is one of the African countries with the highest literacy rate. It’s know to have some of the best universities in Africa but the quality of education has dropped severely for several decades and the Zimbabweans are now facing educational crisis. The organization ZINAZU is an umbrella organization, which aims to connect the students of Zimbabwe. They want to promote their interests and views to the educational and political authorities. It...
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All Burma Federation of Student Unions and Min Ko Naing

All Burma Federation of Student Unions and Min Ko Naing

All Burma Federation of Student Unions (ABFSU) and Min Ko Naing were awarded the Student Peace Prize of 2001 for their nonviolent contribution to the fight for democracy and peace in Burma. Burma has a long history of student activism that goes back to the 1930’s. In 1951 several student organizations formed a union, called ABFU. Educational failure in Burma In Burma, the military junta has not put enough resources on the development of higher educational system. There is a lack of libraries and reading rooms at the schools. The educational method does not encourage the participation of students. Many of the teachers are not qualified, as they have been graduated from the same intuitions. The failure of the educational system along with the extreme lack of speech imposed by the military junta, creates a poor environment for learning and development. Min Ko Naing On the first student conference since 1962, Min Ko Naing was elected as the chairman of ABFSU. The same year...
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