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Students represent Germany and Libya at MUN Conference

Lower 5, Upper 5 and Lower 6 students attended their second MUN conference of this academic year at Benenden School, Kent.

The students represented the countries of Germany and Libya on the social, cultural and humanitarian committee; disarmament and international security; economic and social committee; historical; World Health Organisation; crisis; and special political and decolonisation committees. One student represented Germany on the Security Council. They debated topics ranging from: the militarisation of space; protection of rights of the LGBTQ & community across the globe; capacity building in failing states; integration and assimilation of migrants into new environments; the containment of the Zika Virus; the Kurdish people; nation state of China; and Jammu and Kashmir state in 1948.

For the first time, Benenden decided to have a Wizarding Council Organisation. Two of our students attended the Durmstrang Institute of Magic and represented Victor Krum and Igor Karkaroff. They enjoyed debates around the question of the discrimination of wizarding minorities in light of a recent Muggleborn Massacre.

All participants honed their skills of diplomacy, co-operation, public speaking and listening to alternative perspectives. Well done to all of our pupils, who have taken part in MUN so far this year. Thank you to Mrs Newhouse and Mr Tibber for their support and help in making the trip possible.

The students shared some of their thoughts about their experience:

Kamran (Lower 6) writes, “It was an incredible experience. I was in the Security Council and we debated about the Kurdish people. We had many fruitful debates and some questionable statements were made during the debate. I actually made one myself, quite a questionable one! I made the statement that Germany could veto a clause as it was part of the ‘P5 +1’. Eventually, I lost my case and felt embarrassed! Overall, it was one of the best experiences and hopefully I will be going for the next conference.”

Francesca (Lower 5) writes, “In the Special Political Committee, the question of capacity building in failing states was debated. This debate gave way to an unlikely alliance between the DPRK and the US with Syria taking an overly aggressive stance. It was a day of enjoyable debate and we are looking forward to CLS MUN in March.”

Scarlett (Upper 5) writes, “In my committee (SOCHUM), we were debating the protection of LGBT rights. Unfortunately, I was Libya, and therefore had to argue for a lot of things that I don’t actually believe in. Nevertheless, it was an interesting debate, with many good points raised.”

Laura (Upper 5) writes, “In my committee (ECOSOC), we debated the integration and assimilation of migrants into new environments. I represented Germany, who has clear views on this issue, so I found this topic very enjoyable. I learnt more about different countries, and was particularly fascinated by the views of the DPRK. Overall, it was a productive day of debate and we passed a resolution.”

Lani (Upper 5) writes, “The situation of the Zika virus was discussed in my committee (WHO) and was surprisingly more controversial than I first thought. The day took a surprising turn when Spain started advocating the removal of all support under the premise of Darwin’s survival of the fittest. All in all it was a fun day of productive debate.”

Izzy (Upper 5) writes, “My committee (historical) was set in 1948, and we debated the issue of Jammu and Kashmir. I was not allowed to use any evidence after this time, or suggest any modern methods of problem solving. This was challenging, but also very stimulating. I was representing Germany, and so was able to develop my knowledge regards post WWII Germany.”