The European Students’ Union (ESU) strongly rejects the news article issue by Azerbaijani Students’ Organisation (ASYOU) in which a number of false claims were made. The article distorts the decisions and opinions adopted by the highest decision-making body of ESU.
ESU’s 67th Board Meeting was held in Baku, Azerbaijan from 1-5 December. During this time, ESU’s Board passed a resolution condemning the misuse of schools in armed conflicts, which has been reformulated and renamed by ASYOU for the purpose of condemning the Armenian actions in Nagorno Karabakh.
While maintaining ESUs utmost support to the resolution passed, ESU distances itself from taking any position in the aforementioned conflict and strongly disapproves the misuse of its resolutions in the interests of warfare. As a response to ASYOU’s actions in the aftemath of ESUs Board Meeting, ESU would like to clarify:
In a news article on ASYOU’s website, ASYOU claims that a “Baku resolution” concerning the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was passed by the Board. ESU and its member unions by no means took any position in the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia concerning Nagorno-Karabakh.
The correct name of the resolution referred to is titled “ESU calls for increased protection of schools and universities during armed conflict”. By passing a resolution supporting the Lucens guidelines ESU voiced its concerns about the use of schools in armed conflicts. This resolution did not mention any specific conflict and has not been meant to support any party in conflict whatsoever.
While the Legislative Board regularly supports its member unions in national and international matters, ESU never interferes with issues of military conflict and warfare unless the Board specifically agrees to do so. However, the Board neither proposed nor adopted any policies or resolutions which would potentially take a stand on military conflict or warfare during this Board Meeting.
In addition, the article implied that the unanimous adoption of such a resolution was rare. In fact, the vast majority of resolutions proposed by members of the Board are adopted unanimously. It is a statutory aim of the Board Meeting to reach the widest possible agreement.
During, before and after our statutory meetings we expect all of our members to respect the statutory values of the organisation which is diverse, democratic and open-minded. The includes but it is not limited to respecting the decision taken at the Board meeting.
ESU hereby fully distances itself from ASYOU’s news article, which falsely claims a position never taken by ESU. ESU demands that ASYOU correct these falsities, and that it also urges news sources that conveyed these falsities to rectify them. ESU also demands that that ASYOU issue a public apology towards ESU and its members. ESU will follow-up the actions taken in its name and will take action to prevent any misuse of its positions.