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One ASSEI-B scholarship is awarded in Kragujevac



For Serbia’s Statehood Day, we were at the renewed Students’ Oratory Competition of the Faculty of Law, University of Kragujevac. Like in Belgrade, this competition also gathered a large number of students brave enough to stand in front of the auditorium and try to convince them in their ideas in an interesting manner. One student, Aleksandra Jelic, has drawn our representatives’ attention to her speech, so we decided to award her with the full scholarship for the Alpbach Summer School on European Integrationin Belgrade.

We hope we will visit this competition next year as well, and that we will make a tradion out of this award. Read below her thoughts on Serbia’s European perspectives and her speech.

What do you expect from the Alpbach Summer School of European Integration in Belgrade?
In the first place, I am happy to gain new experiences and knowledge. I hope that I will make new friends and contacts. As you have recognized my ideas and views in my speech, I certainly hope that they will be affirmed and enhanced with your help.

Can you name us 5 key advantages of the Serbian EU integrations?
In the first place, in terms of judiciary, it is of great importance to harmonize national legislations, and acceptance of the international standards in all areas of law, particularly in the area of criminal law and intellectual property.

EU Integration of Serbia means a guarantee for all foreign investors that they can freely come in our country without the special concerns and uncertainties.

We will have the opportunity to improve our culture and educational development, similar to models from other countries, but also the presentation of historical and cultural achievements of our people. Finally, EU integration of Serbia provides some form of public safety and security, which is based on international documents.

Whether and why regional cooperation is a precondition for EU integration?
Cooperation, in every sense of the word, is an irreplaceable way to resolve all issues or problems. Therefore it is inevitable that all disputes are left behind in the past, because they belong over there. We must use them as a role model for the future in the name of further action and cooperation.

How do you see Serbia in 10 years?
The changes are a process that requires time, therefore I do not live in a world of illusions. Still, I see a country where corruption is reduced, improved health system, and law is closer to justice, and that trend will turn into a way of living.

How would you position the young Serbian intellectuals and their role in the further development of society?
The biggest problem in our country is the so-called brain drain, and also the fact that more than 60,000 college diploma and faculties are not ratified or recognized by the national employment office. Academics citizens do not have the opportunity to improve their knowledge, gain practice, neither someone respects their opinion in any sphere of the society. This role must be higher, given that the world remains to young people.


Only several hundred years ago, thousands of families were destroyed by debt bondage. Due to high interest rates and low employment opportunities, men sold their wives and children to provide for existence. Today, in the 21 century, the century of progress, technology and guaranteed human rights, it no longer exists. Everyone has their one loaf of bread and bit of salt and guaranteed place under the sun. Once, not so long ago, people were burned at the stake, stoned and had their personal and property rights taken away, and all because of different interests and attitudes. Today, in civilized world these punishments do not exist.

You don`t say… Indeed, they exist. They are just removed from the public eye, hidden under the carpet, and then placed in a form of human and minority rights and freedoms.

I am Aleksandra Jeli? and I am European. I come from a country which is situated in the southeast part of the continent. However, it is not exactly clear to me for which reason does a certain Aleksandra live in one, and a certain George in a completely different Europe. While that George travels to universe (sky is, for heaven`s sake, boundary!), the other one languishes in isolation and cannot move even within boundaries of her own country. She cannot even go to Prizren. And with all of her possible guaranteed rights she worries about what will be the consequences of her publicly stated opinion. Freedom seems to be misunderstood. Who is this self-proclaimed executioner standing at the top of the pyramid deciding about who is the enemy of freedom? Do not forget, servants of the executioner are more repulsive than the executioner himself.

The tendency of the modern times is a world without borders; nevertheless we are more limited than ever. Each hour, states, smaller even from the Vatican City, grow very quickly. Never mind how small is the crown, it`s still a crown.

In theory, justice is the same for all, but I ask you, why is it in practice so selective that what applies to a person from one legal area does not apply to others. Do international ad hoc tribunals exist for everybody or just for the people from the territory of former Yugoslavia or, for instance, Rwanda? Does the same law apply to us all: for those from the old and new continent, for those educated and the less educated, the rich and the poor? For Aleksandra and for George? If it does not apply, tell me its price, because I would gladly pay it, for the sake of a carefree childhood, stress less youth and dignified old age.

Can anyone understand this silence of ours, this darkness of ours, in which like blind people we walk aimlessly? Does anyone understand what do these many years of silence tell us? Can anyone hear their words, messages, warnings? Do we have to reconcile with so much discordance and contradiction among us? Everywhere there is only hatred. It seems to me that if I were to bite a man, he would get infected with rabies. And we are so accustomed to the lie that in the truth no one believes any more. The truth of one time is a misconception of another.

But all the same, the things were like that and they will continue to be. Let`s swallow our knowledge, our restlessness and wait because one day everything will fall right into place. And all our life, we shall wait for that one day. But life goes away and that one day never comes. And only than we realize that it was worth noting: neither obedience, nor imagination, nor the heat of our dreams. Because life is not made of dreams, but of acts of each individual. Everything that could have happened, but did not, the wind carries it away, leaving no trace.

“When we postpone the harvest, the fruit rots, but when we postpone our problems, they keep on growing”. Thus, each of us has to choose, not just accept their fate. We have the power; therefore, let`s use it. Let`s fight for equality, fight for better today, not for better tomorrow. Let`s tighten broadened minds and extend tightened hearts.

It suffices that each and every one of us take the first step towards changing ourselves, that is how we will change the world as well! Res, non verba! Acts, my dears, acts, not the words!

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