Externado professor shared the Colombia peace experience at a seminar in Poland

Irene Cabrera, of the Finance, Government and International Relations Faculty, was the only Latin American professor participating in the Raphael Lemkin Seminar for Prevention of Genocide and Mass Atrocities, held in Poland.

On June 4-10, 2017, the Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation (AIPR) held the 2017 Raphael Lemkin Seminar for the Latin American Network, with support from the United Nations Office of Special Advisers on Prevention of Genocide and the Responsibility to Protect (OSAPG); the Centre for Dialogue and Prayer in Oświęcim; the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), and the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.

In 2017 there were 21 participants from the Latin American Network member countries, among which was professor-researcher Irene Cabrera. The purpose of the seminar was to generate spaces for discussion and training of high-level officials and decision makers from different countries in the world.

“We were invited, for a week, to the concentration camps in Auschwitz, Poland, to attend classes and interactive seminars on prevention tools. Also, to understand the concepts of genocide and the processes by which mass atrocities occur, and the different tools for prevention,” tells Professor Cabrera.

The program was divided into thematic areas dealing with the concepts of genocide, atrocities, and prevention, as well as historical modules. Participants also made guided study visits to Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau.

The Seminar also focused on approaches to prevention before, during, and after conflicts, in modules led by OSAPG and AIPR representatives, as well as experts on gender-based violence, transitional justice, and transnational crimes.

The Finance, Government and International Relations professor tells that the objective of the process is to update officials on current international cases of armed conflict and transition. “In this framework is how, through the Raphael Lemkin Institute and the United Nations, I was selected to participate as a teacher of one of the modules on the Colombia case,” she stated.

The Externado professor, participating in the Transitions module, spoke about peacebuilding in prolonged wars. “What I shared in this seminar is part of the results of the book being published, “Madurez para la paz” (Maturity for peace), elaborated by Professor Camilo Echandía and me. These results were capitalized for the presentation, as we have been gathering evidence history since 1964, “she added.

The seminar concluded with a module which reviewed the use of concepts, actions, and good practices, resulting from the previous week’s discussions.