During the past weeks, we found ourselves in a tragic war. We are touched to see the support and action to support our friends in need. In these hard times, it’s heartwarming to see the great potential we have as an international student association for good, for instance by all the help offered in the support group https://www.facebook.com/groups/668984624148591/.
A remaining point of concern for many members and EGEAns is the partnership with the Russian Geographical Society (RGS), a Russian scientific institution with the aim to promote geography and boost scientific knowledge and research in Russia. The partnership with the RGS was signed in September of 2019, for a duration of five years and for strictly scientific cooperation. However, EGEA decided to terminate the partnership with the Russian Geographical Society, by the soonest legally possible point in time (30days after our notice of termination).
As an international association that advocates for friendship and respect, we condemn the war started by the Russian government on Ukraine. The main responsible figures for this war are formally involved in leadership positions in the organisation of RGS (Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, Head of the Board of Trustees, and Sergey Kuzhugetovich Shoygu, Defence Minister of Russia and President of RGS). This is the result of an open, and participative decision-making process wherein as much as possible EGEAns were reached to share their thoughts and comments.
We are aware that members of the RGS might not only be passionate about geography, open to dialogue, and keen on learning about new cultures, but also clearly disagree with the military invasion. However, EGEA cannot be partners with an organisation whose leaders are involved in war crimes.
As always, EGEA stays true to its mission, vision and values, encouraging and promoting friendship, respect, curiosity, inspiration, and personal development. For this reason, we want to encourage every EGEAn to remain respectful towards one another also in this very tragic and emotional time, and to keep our connections closer than ever. Last but not least, EGEA is and will be an association for the whole of Europe. The termination of this partnership has no influence on the friendship and support EGEA has with the Russian entities.
The Board of EGEA