NEW YORK, August 2, 2013 – The Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation is pleased to announce the addition of Ms. Laura Collins and Dr. Ashad Sentongo to the directing team of the African Network for Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention. Ms. Collins has been appointed to the position of Director of Francophone Affairs and European Relations, and Dr. Sentongo will take up the role of Director of African Relations. Ms. Collins holds a Joint European Masters in Human Rights and Genocide Studies from Kingston University, and Dr. Sentongo received a PhD from the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University. Ms. Collins has expertise in a variety of areas, including the role of religious institutions in genocide prevention as well as human rights and genocide prevention. Dr. Sentongo brings to AIPR vast experience in the areas of genocide prevention and organizational development, as well as knowledge of African systems for genocide prevention, as evidenced by his involvement in the establishment of National Committees for the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide and Mass Atrocities in the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR).
In February 2013, the Peace and Security Department of the African Union Commission and the Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation entered into a partnership, creating the African Network for Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention and welcoming the participation of all African Union Member States.
The African Network will provide targeted bi-annual genocide prevention seminars for African Union Commission officials, African Union Member State civil servants, and representatives of the African regional economic communities at Auschwitz and in key African locations; develop a genocide prevention curriculum for continent-wide civil service education to be implemented at the national level; and facilitate the creation and development of national initiatives and national formal mechanisms for genocide and mass atrocity prevention in each participating country.