Moderator: Mimoza Hafizi
Former Member of Parliament and Deputy Minister of Education of Albania
Mimoza Hafizi is a former member of the Assembly and Deputy Minister of Education of the Republic of Albania for the LIBRA Party. She represented the Socialist Party from 2013 until 2016. On October 2016, together with Ben Blushi, she created LIBRA. She was born on 20 February 1962 in Shkodër. She graduated from the University of Tirana in Physics and is a well known astrophysicist in the country. She later continued her doctoral studies in France, in the École Normale Supérieure in Paris. She is a prominent figure, a well known academic and a MP since 2013 for Shkodër County.
Professor Mimoza Hafizi spoke of an education that aims at opening the minds of the young generation and helps people to be oriented toward the future, getting away from the hostile past and leading to equal opportunities for all. She emphasized that education for all is the best way to peace and human development as far as it includes teaching of morality and good citizenship, because ignorance leads to misunderstanding, violence, etc. Sustainable education leads the way to innovation and to social development.
Speaker: Hon. Prof. Dr. Enver Hoxhaj
Deputy Prime Minister, Republic of Kosovo
Dr. Enver Hoxhaj is the Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Kosovo. Previously, Dr. Hoxhaj was Minister of Foreign Affairs (2011-2014 and 2016-2017), during which time he played a vital role in consolidating and strengthening Kosovo’s bilateral and multilateral diplomacy. He was the first Minister of Education (2008-2010) after Kosovo’s independence, playing a crucial role in the modernization of the education system and infrastructure. He was a member of the Kosovo delegation in the UN-led talks for defining Kosovo’s final status (2005-2007) and played a key role during the state-building process before and after Kosovo’s independence. Before this, he was a professor at the University of Pristina and a long-standing human rights activist. He holds a Ph.D. in history and politics from the University of Vienna and is the author of numerous journal articles, books and other publications.
Dr. Enver Hoxhaj stated that Southeast Europe is a region that has lacked freedom, peace and stability for a long time and that Bosnia, Serbia and Kosovo were left aside by NATO, an organization conducive to development and stability; they are now on a different path to the EU.
He said that peace comes through the political will of the people and also through foreign projects and that peace building is possible with both sides of the same coin, internal and external.
He mentioned that he had been in politics for 15 years and acted in education for peace, as a professor of political studies and hoped that some countries can learn from what was achieved in Kosovo.
As he was part of the Kosovo delegation, he learned conflict resolution, and he emphasized that peace be followed up with dialogue between different parties, because if one country fails at peace, all the countries in the region are affected. Thus there is a need to look at the other nations in the region. Finally, he said that peace building is not a linear process and encounters many challenges along the way.
Speaker: Hon. Nina Nováková
Member of Parliament, Czech Republic
Hon. Nina Nováková is a member of the Czech Republic Parliament. She is a member of the Human Rights Committee, the Education Committee and the Media Committee. As a Member of Parliament she focuses on strengthening family values and improving schools and education conditions for young people. MP Nováková graduated from Charles University in Prague, where she studied education, Latin and social sciences. For many years she taught ethics. She is the founder and chair of the Stara Boleslav City Association, and serves as a committee member of the Czech Christian Academy.
Hon. Nina Nováková spoke on the way to pass on a culture of peace to children in the schools, which are the only settings that all citizens attend. For the future of Europe it is essential that all people go to school in order to prevent parallel societies to develop that do not understand each other, a problem that would destroy social cohesion and prevent peace.
She mentioned that many families are in a situation where children do not receive adequate care from both parents and are thus denied the necessary conditions of a healthy social development. Although schools can’t replace parents, the role of schools today is not only to educate children but also to raise them up.
She said that European culture provides a good basis for Christian culture, providing there is a basis for love. The culture of peace needs to be spread, and peace being more than the absence of war, it needs to be built and protected by those who have the willingness and strength to build relationships.
She mentioned three groups that are anti-human, extreme bio-centrists, fanatical believers of cyberspace and political totalitarians and that politicians blame humans for destroying nature to the extent that many young people believe humans are bad for the planet and want to reduce the population.
She observed that Europe has a culture of death as it condemns war but allows a war against humans and that the time has come to teach that humans belong to nature and should be protected as one of the species. She believes that pedagogues should talk about basic human rights, in a society that believes in the right to kill human fetuses, and that teachers are in conflict about teaching the new gender agendas but don’t stand up against it for fear of losing their jobs.
She pointed out that Southeast Europe and Central Europe have many similarities with a common goal to transform the culture of death into a culture of peace, and that renouncing faith would be the worst. She concluded by saying that passing on a culture of peace in the family and school requires great courage and that parents, grandparents and teachers must support each other.
Speaker: Mr. Ali Laçej
President, Albanian Peace Council
Mr. Ali Laçej, President, Albanians Peace Council, started by saying “Welcome to Albania!” in different languages and that the Balkan nations need education, as the environment is the highest and closest manifestation of the concept of God. He quoted Aristotle’s saying that “The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living differ from the dead” and emphasized character education, as a person of good character will do good things and also Francis Bacon’s “Knowledge is power” and added that knowledge without wisdom is worse than ignorance itself.
He mentioned Albania’s two sayings, that the guest is master and that every person is as valuable as another one. Finally, he pointed out that the quality of life depends on family, health, friends, home, joy, work, leisure and peace and talked about the six pillars of character: respect, trustworthiness, responsibility, fairness, caring, citizenship and the necessity for the whole human race to adhere to moral values, taught by True Parents, the life coaches.