Sinjajevina Hosts an International Conference Promoting the “Protection Through Use” of Upland Environments and Rural Areas

By World BEYOND War, October 22, 2023

An update on the campaign to protect Sinjajevina.

Three years after the first camp that prevented the construction of a military training ground in Sinjajevina, 20 scientists from five countries are discussing the socially and environmentally sustainable conservation, protection, and use of upland landscapes like Sinjajevina.

An international conference and scientific field mission is being held in Sinjajevina and the nearby town of Kolašin, because of the unique and outstanding natural and cultural heritage of the mountain. During more than three years the Italian University of Genoa (Italy), the French National Council for Scientific Research (CNRS), the University of Toulouse (France), the University of Granada (Spain), the University of Durham (Great Britain) and the University of Montenegro among others, worked together in a research about Rural Heritage and Sustainable practices of mountain landscapes in Europe. Between 19 and 21 October 2023, the core of this international team co-funded by the EU, and composed by 20 scientists from five countries, are visiting Sinjajevina.

Sinjajevina is one of the last places in Europe where traditional ecological farming continues to exist in equilibrium with the environment – holds some of the most extraordinary culinary products of outstanding quality and assures an expanded biodiversity dependent on the traditional pastoralism.

Pablo Domínguez, Environmental Anthropology Senior Researcher at CNRS (France) says: “SCIENCE with capital letters has come to study and publically reaffirm these values of Sinjajevina, while fully conscious that it is under the severe threat of a military ground creation, as well as of possible future massive tourism like in the neighboring Durmitor that has almost completely emptied the territory from its old practices. Any plans for this territory should be consulted directly with the holders and continuous creators of the living heritage of Sinjajevina, those who are its traditional dwellers (pastoralists, farmers, honey producers, wild berry collectors, herb gatherers, etc.).”

Milan Sekulic, President of the Save Sinjajevina Civic Initiative says: “The conference is celebrated three years after the beginning of the resistance camp that stopped military exercises at Sinjajevina in 2020 and since then has not allowed any munition to be dropped on this territory. Sinjajevina holds traditions that are more necessary than ever to look sustainably towards the future in the unavoidable and necessary ecologic transition towards which now the entire world is gearing its efforts, fully conscious of the severe risks related to global environmental degradation.”

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