The meeting was also attended by Senior Officer of Economic Affairs&Trade (Mr. Alexey Grigoriev), Second Secretary (Ms. Jetske (Maria) Klein), and Honorary Consul of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (Valery Bespalov).
During the meeting, Mr. Martijn Elgersma spoke about the history of Dutch-Russian relations over the past 300 years since the time of Peter the Great, as well as their current state and prospects for further development. As a separate point, Mr. Elgersma highlighted the need for Russia and the EU countries to jointly solve global problems of the 21st century.
He also noted that, despite all the modern disagreements between many countries, sooner or later mutual understanding will be reached, and active cooperation in all spheres of life and society will definitely reach a new level as well.
Mr. Elgersma’s story and communication with the honored guests took place in English, and the acting rector of SSU Ms. Maria G. Ganchenkova assumed the role of moderator of the meeting. Students of the Institute of Philology, History and Oriental Studies, studying at the major of «Linguistics», took an active part in communication with Mr. Martijn Elgersma and asked him lots of different questions.
For example, the students first asked general questions: what did Mr. Elgersma like most in Russia (question by Ershov Maxim), they also asked about the difference between Sakhalin weather and the weather in the Netherlands (by Ivankovich Daria), popular youth professions in the Kingdom of the Netherlands (by Plyaskina Ksenia), and also about the problems of coronavirus in the EU countries (by Butkov Yaroslav).
In addition, students devoted a large block of questions to topical issues of environmental protection: the negative impact of oil and gas companies on the marine area (by Elizaveta Nemchenko), fires in Siberia and pollution of Lake Baikal (by Yaroslav Butkov), air pollution in the Netherlands (by Maria Ignatenko), the formation of ecological habits in the younger generation (by Elena Ivashechkina).
After answering these questions, Mr. Elgersma, at the initiative of students, switched to the topic of the LGBT community in Russia and ways to make Russian society more loyal to different sexual orientations (question by Ivashechkina Elena), and also he answered about the possibility of student exchange between universities in Russia and the Netherlands (by Bobrova Kristina).
At the end of the meeting, Mr. Martijn Elgersma was offered to write a message in the Book of Distinguished Guests of SSU, and he gladly agreed and wrote the following:
«What a tremendous morning this was at Sakhalin State University. I learnt a lot about your scientific programs and, especially, about your students. It is impressive how actively your students discussed today’s topics, and they asked difficult, but important questions. This helps us to better understand and identify possibilities for cooperation. I wish you all success, and I hope to be back to your beautiful island».
The Department for International Relations of SSU expresses its deep gratitude to all those who took part in the preparation, organization and holding of this meeting.