ICSU CFRS welcomes acquittal of Heinz Richter
The Committee on Freedom and Responsibility in the conduct of Science (CFRS) of the International Council for Science (ICSU) is pleased to see the complete acquittal of Professor Heinz Richter, a historian and scholar of Greek history, who was arrested and tried under a new Greek “racism” law for his depiction of Greek resistance during WWII.
However, it is appalling that national laws concerning racism (or any law for that matter) can be used to bring charges to attack researchers for revealing politically unpalatable aspects of the historical record.
For CFRS, as the custodian of the Principle of Universality of Science on behalf of ICSU, it is critically important that local and national governments, as well as national and global academic institutions, actively support and protect the freedom of scholars in history, cultural studies, social or political sciences to publish their findings, even when dealing with politically sensitive issues such as war, migration, and minorities. In this perspective, the support offered from the scholarly community in Greece to Professor Richter during his arrest and trial is reassuring.