JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS ACCUSE AUTHORITIES OF NATIONAL DISCRIMINATION. Jewish organizations believe, liquidation of the International Humanities Institute, which trained specialists in the sphere of Jewish culture, is national discrimination.
Rector of the Belarusian State University Vasil Strazhaw signed the order to liquidate the International Humanities Institute, a structural unit of BSU. Jewish organizations consider liquidation of this institution which prepared specialists in the field of the Jewish culture, a national discrimination.
BSU rector Vasil Strazhaw signed the order to liquidate the Institute after the similar order signed by the Ministry of Education. Neither the Ministry, nor the BSU rector explain the reasons for liquidation.
The International Humanities Institute was founded 5 years ago. It was financed by donors interested in restoration of the Jewish education in Belarus. The sponsors’ money was used for reconstruction of the Institute building, new facilities and computer equipment. Besides that, foreign donors promised to grant 30 million USD for building a new institute campus. The order of the new Education Minister Alexander Radzkow to liquidate the institution in the beginning of the new academic year was quite a surprise for the BSU administration. Before rector Alexander Kazulin was replaced by Vasil Strazhaw, the University Board had created an ad-hoc commission for negotiations with the Education Ministry. The only result was that the Institute’s Department of Jewish Studies would not be liquidated, but transferred under the roof of one of the BSU faculties.
Jewish organizations are indignant at the authorities’ decision. They appeal to the Belarusian public and the international structures.
Last year first students were to graduate from the International Humanities Institute. The BSU rector ordered to give students diplomas of graduation from the BSU Faculty of International Relations.
Since 1938 there have been no Jewish schools or educational establishments which offer classes in the sphere of Jewish culture. Representatives of Jewish organizations believe, liquidation of the Institute which trained specialists in Jewish culture, translators, and synagogue staff, is a serious attack on Jewish education in Belarus.