On November 2, 2023, the International University of Sarajevo (IUS) proudly hosted a ceremony to celebrate the commencement of the new Academic Year. The guest of honor was the Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye, Honorable Prof. Dr. Numan Kurtulmuş, who delivered an insightful and inspiring speech titled “Is the New World Possible?”. Other distinguished guests included the Second Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Denis Zvizdić, President of the Foundation for Education Development Sarajevo (SEDEF), Mr. Hasan Topaloğlu, President of the IUS Board of Trustees, Mrs. Sevgi Kurtulmuş, IUS Rector, Prof. Dr. Ahmet Yıldırım, members of the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye, representatives from the Turkish Embassy in Sarajevo, International Balkan University, University of New York Tirana and respected guests from Bosnia and Herzegovina and Türkiye.
IUS Rector, Prof. Dr. Ahmet Yıldırım, opened the ceremony by expressing gratitude for hosting such an important event, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the Turkish Republic and the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the University. He highlighted that despite being a young institution, IUS has already gained a reputable position not only in Bosnia and Herzegovina but also in the region.
Second Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Denis Zvizdić, addressed the audience, emphasizing the challenges faced by education in the digital age, where technology, the internet, and artificial intelligence have become integral parts of our lives. He advised students to be dedicated learners today, ensuring they become ethical leaders, good colleagues, and high-quality professionals tomorrow. He emphasized the importance of hard work, warning that "overnight success" is the result of years of dedication and encouraged students to learn from their mistakes.
The guest of honor, Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye, Prof. Dr. Numan Kurtulmuş, expressed gratitude for Bosnia and Herzegovina's partnership with Türkiye and reiterated Türkiye's continuous support for the country in various challenges. Addressing the issue of migration, Prof. Kurtulmuş questioned the root causes of migrations, citing conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. He emphasized the ongoing events in Gaza, pointing out crimes against humanity, and drew attention to historical atrocities such as those in Auschwitz and Srebrenica, where thousands of people were killed in front of Europe’s and world’s so-called “civilized” eyes. He criticized those who remained silent or sided with oppressors. Prof. Kurtulmuş stressed that just as the perpetrators of Auschwitz and Srebrenica faced international courts, the perpetrators of the atrocities in Palestine will also be held accountable in international courts, based on historical evidence.
Prof. Kurtulmuş drew attention to the unprecedented asymmetrical use of power in Gaza, where approximately two million people live. He stated that "About 10,000 people have been killed. There are no hospitals, no electricity. They cannot even care for the severely wounded. In such a situation, the world exhibits the same attitude. Some stand with the oppressor, some do not see, and some become accomplices to this shame."
After the ceremony, Certificates of Appreciation and gifts were presented to IUS students Mirza Kadrić, Mirza Karić, Anes Piknjač, and Amer Đidelija, winners of the Good Hackathon competition for the second consecutive year. The ceremony concluded with the exchange of tokens of appreciation between Mr. Hasan Topaloğlu and Prof. Dr. Numan Kurtulmuş, symbolizing their current and future cooperation.