Daily Archives: March 24, 2008

European University: A Battle Won (A Letter from Artemy Magun)

Dear Colleagues,

As you might have heard, the European University was reopened last Friday! I want to thank you all, on my own behalf (the rector’s general thanks are at www.eu.spb.ru), for your support: many of you have signed letters for us and took other important, helpful steps. This small victory was the cumulative result of many channels of 
influence: hundreds of letters and thousands of signatures; street 
actions of students and teachers (including a regular “Street 
University” that we plan to continue on a new, extended basis); and elite negotiations. A very important step was an open letter from a group of Russian academicians published in the national newspaper Kommersant. Finally, 
one morning Saint Petersburg mayor Matvienko called the rector on the phone and told him that, to her knowledge, the firemen had already withdrawn their claims. And, sure enough, within two days a court held a hearing that decided the case in favor of the university, in less than 
three minutes. As a colleague of mine joked: “Long live the Russian Court, the most dependent court in the world!” The same day, an opposition politician arrested and imprisoned three weeks ago on the fake pretext 
of beating up three policemen was set free.
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