22 aprile 2019

Message from the President AESI Prof. Massimo Maria Caneva

AESI wants to express attention and closeness to all in Sri Lanka those who in these days have been struck by the drama of these acts of violence. At the same time, he wishes to reaffirm that violence will never bring peace and that division will never be the hope of building a better future. University cooperation will always be for AESI a very important tool for young people from all over the world to build peace and promote a culture of solidarity.

SRI LANKA: They were the days of 2004, after the violent earthquake in the Indian Ocean that had caused a devastating tsunami with destruction and hundreds of thousands of victims in many Countries : near and far from its epicentre. In Sri Lanka I was coordinating an Italian Academic Team arrived with some University Rectors to try to learn about the situation and meet local Academics with the support of the Italian Embassy in Colombo: purpose of the Mission was to prepare a University Cooperation Program for prevention and mitigation of natural disasters. An ambitious project that unfortunately was inserted in a context of very violent civil war, but that had the objective of making the leaders of the local civil protection and schools to collaborate overcoming ethnic and religious divisions. I met the Nunzio Mario Zenari in Colombo (now Cardinal Nuncio in Damascus with whom I continue to be contact) who helped us to deepen some dynamics of the civil and religious life of the country. Very important meeting was also with the Rector of the University of Kandy, located on the mountains in the center of the Island, a beautiful City, already capital at the time of the British Colony. The Rector welcomed the Italian Delegation, led by the Italian Ambassador to Colombo, in his private Residence at the Rectorate of Kandy University. He introdocef friendly his family to us. His scientific competence counts him among the most famous scientists in the tsunami sector. This why we did the visit to him at the Kandy University. He was amable and of great human depth, guaranteeing support for this project of university cooperation which also helped to promote not only the formation and prevention of natural risks, but also the cooperation between civil protection experts from different cities of the Island, overcoming divide barriers ethnic and religious. Certainly it was a drop in the sea, but important to create better condition for the civil like in the Island.Today 2019 the news coming from Sri Lanka brings us back to those days of pain for thousands of people, but even more dramatic because they are an expression of an social earthquake of violence and terror for the bombs attacks. Working for peace is and must always be a commitment of everyone in the international community: no one can feel free from this mission to participate and promoting change for peace and solidarity!