Study abroad elsewhere

Due to recent events in the region, the University of Calgary will not send a travel abroad program to India for the first time since a plague outbreak in 1994.

A decision was made in February to put the program on hold when violence erupted between Muslim and Hindu factions in the region of Gujarat.

"A group of Muslim protestors was attacked and people set fire to a train," said International Program Coordinator Joanna Buhr. "Since that time there have been numerous other outbreaks of violence, most of them in Gujarat and some in Maharaja."

These events, combined with the much-publicized turmoil in Kashmir, forced the International Centre to postpone the India program indefinitely.

"It’s going to depend on what happens in the next couple of months," said Buhr about the program’s future. "We really hope that things will settle themselves down."

Tensions in the region have been escalating since India and Pakistan both tested nuclear weapons in May 1998. Since then, growing violence in the disputed region of Kashmir led both nations to deploy million-man armies on each side of the "line of control."

"We hope that India and Pakistan will be able to negotiate a peaceful solution," added Buhr. "But some of my Indian-Canadian friends are very pessimistic about this situation being resolved peacefully."

Until the tensions in the region ease, the International Centre will put its India program on hold, limiting foreign study to locations in the Czech Republic and China.

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