Warsaw hosts European Network Remembrance and Solidarity meeting

Representatives of academia, culture and politics from eight European countries, arrived in Warsaw on Thursday to take part in a two-day annual meeting of the European Network Remembrance and Solidarity (ENRS) Assemblies.

Poland's Deputy Culture Minister in a letter addressed to the gremium stressed that "there is no other, better way to overcome differences in the perception of the past, and to deepen the knowledge of the difficult moments of 20th-century history than international cooperation and respectful dialogue." "In the face of contemporary debates and challenges, the need to intensify efforts for dialogue on the subject of memory is extremely important," wrote Jarosław Sellin.

The minister added that "born out of the discussions related to the remembrance of the most recent history in our part of Europe, the Network still remains a living and important project."

Today's meeting included both plenary sessions and separate meetings of the Academic Council and the ENRS Advisory Board. Participants discussed strategic issues of the Network, such as the accession of new member states to the ENRS, perspectives of the Network's development and thematic priorities for the years 2021-25.

The challenges for the Network in the face of recent developments in international historical policy in Europe were also addressed.

The ENRS, according to a declaration signed in 2005 by culture ministers of the founding countries the purpose of the Network’s activity is to analyse, document and propagate the history of the 20th century, a century of wars, totalitarian dictatorships and the suffering of civilian populations, the victims of wars, persecution, conquest, forced expulsions and nationalist, racist and ideologically motivated repression.

The declaration was signed by Germany, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia. In 2014 Romania joined the structure, and today representatives of five countries as well as those of the Czech Republic, Austria, Latvia, Albania and Georgia sit on the Assemblies – the ENRS Advisory Board and the Academic Council.

The first official Assemblies’ Meeting was held in Warsaw, in February 2010.