Peacekeepers go back to class

October 22, 1999

ROME. Rome's Third University and Italy's military training schools have created a joint masters degree in peacekeeping and security studies in response to the growing role of Italian military and civilian missions in world crisis areas.

Lecturers will come mainly from the university's political science department, together with military experts. The course is aimed at lieutenant-colonels upwards and senior officials of civilian aid organisations.

"We will select the students by February and begin in March," said Luigi Moccia, dean of the political science department. "There should be up to 40 students for this first course, which will last four months. There are no limitations on the kind of degree the candidates have. Their role in peacekeeping work will be important."

According to Professor Moccia, training will draw from a wide range of disciplines: history, sociology, economics and political science, and focus on the specific situations likely to be encountered in a crisis area.

"Students will learn about administering a crisis area, protecting human rights, the new peacekeeping role of armies, and so on, right down to dealing with the media," he said.

"They will be taught about terrorism and weapons, but also about the characteristics of the cultures they encounter abroad. In this first course we will map the needs more precisely and, hopefully will soon establish a permanent training centre."

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