Education for All – Cultural Empowerment, Political Imperative

Picture: Dr Mahmoud Osman, Member of the Council of Representatives Iraq, speaking at yesterday's conference.


By Madeleine White, educationalist, writer and Head of Strategic Partnerships, Whizz Education.


I was going to write about Educational Technology, as Bett (the world’s leading educational technology event) is happening in London at the end of the month. I also considered writing about the Education World Forum, which is linked to Bett and provides an opportunity for Ministers of Education from around the world share ideas and best practice knowledge.

However, yesterday’s International Conference The Untold Story: The Kurdish Genocide in Iraq, was a stark reminder of why the creation of a robust national and international educational frame-work, Education for All, remains a political imperative. Events that support these aims (such as Bett) are therefore not just self-important talking shops, but they provide an inestimable service to the international community by exploring what education really means. So rather than just writing about Bett or the EWF as events, I want to contexualise them.

“It was a beautiful evening, much like any other. The air was still and warm and farmers, after a long hard day, were taking their livestock home. We spotted Russian bombers flying overhead and then dropping a couple of bombs. The odd thing was, there were no major explosions. 15 minutes later though we all smelt it, a smell that didn’t quite fit in, that we didn’t recognise. It was the smell of death”.

Dr Zryan Abdel YonesHealth Adviser to President Barzani, former Health Minister, Kurdistan Regional Government, remembers the first chemical attack in the Anfal genocide operation.

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