The 15th European Meeting of the European Network of Places of Peace (ENPP) which included its 13th General Assembly since it was founded in 2010, was held between the 26th and 29th of October in the village of Kaynardzha, located in the Northeast of Bulgaria, the site of the signing of the 1774 Peace Treaty between the Russian Empire and the Ottoman Empire, which produced significant changes in throughout Eastern Europe and the Balkans.
With the presence of the vast majority of ENPP members, the Meeting discussed the development of the candidacy of sites in Europe associated with the signing of Peace Treaties, analyzed the results of ERASMUS+ projects already carried out and planned some future international youth mobility events within the scope of the ERASMUS+ Accreditation obtained by ENPP at the beginning of 2023. The Meeting also decided to submit a new and improved application for the “Peace Games” project, a cultural exchange project between the Network’s member locations, to the “Creative Europe” Program, as well as committing to prepare an application for “Places of Peace Route” to Cultural Route of the  Council of Europe  for the 2025/2026 evaluation period. To prepare both applications, Working Committees were set up comprising technicians from the areas of Education and Culture from the institutions that are members of the Network in all locations which will integrate such applications.
The ENPP Meeting also discussed the war situation in Europe and approved a declaration of principles, highlighting the defense of the principle of dialogue and negotiation to put an end to this war and create a lasting and sustained peace.
The Meeting’s host member, the Municipality of Kaynardzha, also provided ENPP delegates with a close contact with Bulgarian culture and traditions as well as a visit to the main points of interest in the region.

At the end of October, the village of Kaynardzha, in Bulgaria, hosts two events promoted by ENPP and the Municipality of Kaynardzha, a member of ENPP since 2015: the 15th European Meeting of the Association European Network of Places of Peace  (ENPP) and the international mobility event ERASMUS+“Training Course”.
The 15th ENPP European Meeting will take place between the 26th and 29th of October, with the participation of ENPP members from 10 European countries and will discuss, among other issues, the nominations of sites associated with the signing of Peace Treaties for the European Heritage Label (EHL), the candidacy of the “Peace Games” event to the “CREATIVE EUROPE” program, the strengthening of the structure of the “Places of Peace Route” and its candidacy for Cultural Route of the Council of Europe  as well as the current war situation in Europe.
The “ERASMUS+ Training Course” mobility event, which takes place from October 29th to November 4th, will feature the participation of 32 technicians who work with young people from 8 European countries (Portugal, Netherlands, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania and Ukraine).

From the 13th to the 16th of October, the 14th European Meeting of the Association European Network of Places  of Peace was held in Évora Monte (Portugal) , hosted by the Municipality of Estremoz in its capacity as a founding member of this Association, during which several delegations from foreign countries participated in the General Assembly held on October 14, at Torre/Paço de Évora Monte having visited some of the most emblematic places in the city of Estremoz on the 15th of October, where they were received by the Mayor, Prof. José Daniel Sadio and the Vice-President, Sónia Caldeira.
During the General Assembly, which began with a welcoming speech by the Mayor of Estremoz, Prof. José Daniel Sadio, the members present were informed and discussed the ongoing activities under the responsibility of the Association, namely, the transnational application for the European Heritage Label of European sites where Peace Treaties were signed which the Évora Monte Convention House, owned by of the Municipality of Estremoz, will be integrate and the 2 ERASMUS+ mobility events that will also take place in the Torre/Paço de Évora Monte with the participation of 8 European countries.
The delegations present also discussed ENPP’s 3-year Activity Plan and the Association’s 3-year Financial Plan.
On the same day, the Electoral Assembly of ENPP was also held and elected the new Management Bodies for the four-year period 2022/2026. The Board of ENPP continues to be headed by Eduardo Basso, representing the Evoramonte Castle Friendship Association.
The Assembly also decided to grant Ulf Müller, member of Hubertusburg Castle Friendship Association and former member of the ENPP Board, the status of Associate Member and Honorary Member of ENPP, for his constant commitment to the Association and its activities , since its founding in 2010.
In addition to the delegations of the Portuguese members of the European Network of Sites of Peace, several foreign delegations participated in this meeting, namely a delegation from the Ukrainian city of Khotyn, a member of the Association, headed by the Mayor, Mr. Andryi Dranchuk.

The 13th ENPP European Meeting took place, as scheduled, from the past 14th to 17th of October, in the city of Markranstädt (Germany). It was the first meeting of the Network after the pandemic period, but even so the presence of delegations from some countries, namely from Eastern Europe, was hampered due to the most recent outbreak of COVID-19 that has affected and continues to affect those countries. For this and other reasons, the Meeting worked in a mixed way, in person and online.

The Opening Session, held on 15 October in a meeting room provided by the Municipality of Markranstädt, was attended by members of the Network, in person or online, as well as several guests, including the Mayor of Markranstädt, Ms. Nadine Stitterich, the elected Mayor of the Municipality of Estremoz, Professor José Daniel Sadio, the Director of the Cotroceni National Museum of Bucharest, Mr. Liviu Jicmann and Mr. Rien Sprenger, responsible for the European Cultural Route of St. Martin in the city of Utrecht (Netherlands ) where an important Peace Treaty was signed as well as a delegation from the Municipality of Khotyn (Ukraine), where in 1621 a Peace Treaty was also signed, headed by its Mayor, Mr. Andriy Dranchuk .

During the Opening Session, a heartfelt tribute was paid to Dr. Georg Müller, former President of the Hubertusburg Castle Friendship Association and one of the most enthusiastic promoters of the ENPP, who died on the 25th of September 2021, which consisted of a minute of silence and the emission of a video summarizing the contribution made by Dr. Georg Müller to the creation and development of ENPP during its first years of life, as well as his activity in the German association he presided over. As a result, the 13th ENPP European Meeting approved the attribution to Dr. Georg Müller of the posthumous title of Honorary Member.

During the period of the Agenda, the ENPP European Meeting discussed the strengthening and future activity of the Scientific Council, the presentation of a new application for the sites where Peace Treaties were signed for the European Heritage label (EHL) as well as the Activity Plan the 3-year and 3-year Financial Plan, documents that will now be discussed in each of the members with a view to their approval in the near future.

During the Meeting, visits were carried out in Markranstädt and the neighboring region, which culminated in several visits to institutions and monuments in the city of Leipzig.

The next ENPP European Meeting is scheduled for the 1st half of 2022, in a location yet to be defined.

In a joint organization of the European Network of Places of Peace, the Center for Advanced Studies in Tourism of the University of Bologna and the CIDEHUS of the University of Évora, the 1st Annual International Interdisciplinary Conference on the theme „Places of Peace: Making Europe throughout Peace Treaties” already has a date set for June 30, 2021 and will be held online.

For the dissemination of this Conference and for the reception of all collaborations for the topics to be discussed, a dedicated website is now available online at http://conference.placesofpeace.eu  where interested parties can find all details and information on the procedures to be followed.

The Conference Chair will consist of 3 elements representing the organizing entities: Patrizia Battilani, Director of the Center for Advanced Studies in Tourism at the University of Bologna (Italy), Eduardo Basso, President of the European Network of Sites of Peace and Áurea Rodrigues, researcher at CIDEHUS of the University of Évora.

This 1st Annual Conference has already confirmed 3 keynote speakers: Patrizia Battilani from University of Bologna (Italy), Fábio Carbone, from University of Coventry (United Kingdom) and Tóth Ferenc, researcher at the History Institute of the Humanities Research Center in Budapest (Hungary) .

The “CALL FOR PAPERS” is already open and the deadline for sending “abstracts” will be the 15th of January 2021. After receiving the “abstracts”, a selection will be made by the members of the Scientific Council of the Conference constituted by 27 elements from 13 countries (Bulgaria,  Brazil, Croatia, Cyprus, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and United Kingdom) based on their relevance to the topics of the Conference. The acceptance notification will be made until January 31, 2021.

Partners in this Conference are all current members of the European Network of Sites of Peace, spread across 9 European countries.

On 24th of April, the members of European Network of Places of Peace met by videoconference to discuss various issues related to the present and future activity of the Network, with the participation of representatives of the Network’s locations in Portugal, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Bulgaria and Romania.

The members of the Network unanimously approved a Vote of Condolences for the death of Professor Doctor Diogo Freitas do Amaral, a great friend and supporter of ENPP, and decided to grant him the degree of ENPP Honorary Member, posthumously.

The members of the Network also unanimously approved a proposal by the President of the Board to submit again an application of Places of Peace Route for Cultural Route of the Council of Europe, after an invitation addressed by the European Institute of Cultural Routes based in Luxembourg.

The meeting also carried out a review of the preparatory work at each site for the application of places in Europe where Peace Treaties were signed to the European Heritage Label in the category of “transnational site” which started in last Januar /February.

It was found that this work was interrupted in practically all locations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but was decided to continue preparing the application as soon as possible so that the list of locations included in the application, current members of the Network or not, can be closed until 15th September 2020, regardless of a possible postponement of the application deadline by the European Commission.

The members of the Network exchanged information about the consequences of the current epidemic crisis in each country and decided to take a public position whose text is currently being prepared.

The President of ENPP, Eduardo Basso, met on February 20 with the Mayor of Vasvár, Mr. Toth Balázs, in the Town Hall of this Hungarian member of ENPP and Places of Peace Route.
During the meeting issues related to Network local development and the current certification process of Places of Peace Route as Cultural Route of the Council of Europe were discussed.
After the meeting the President of ENPP visited the House of Peace and the Museum of Vasvár, also accompanied by the Director of the Museum, Mr. Zágorhidi Czigány Balázs.

The Peace Tour – Alcáçovas/Évora Monte (Portugal), an initiative of the European Network of Places of Peace and the Municipality of Viana do Alentejo operated by the tour operator RSI-Viagens, Estremoz, will make its inaugural trip on Saturday, June 16.

The main purpose of the Peace Tour is to make known the places where the two Peace Treaties – the Treaty of Alcáçovas and the Convention of Evoramonte – were signed, which deeply marked the history of Portugal in the late 15th and early 19th century, respectively.

This is a one-day tour, to be held on Saturdays with planned departures from Lisbon (Gare do Oriente) and Évora (Portas do Raimundo/GALP), with the morning part dedicated to the village of Alcáçovas and the afternoon to be passed in the Castle of Evoramonte.

In Alcáçovas the participants will have the opportunity to visit the Paço dos Henriques, the recently recovered place where the Treaty was signed, the Garden of Shells annexed to the Palace and to attend a Historical Representation about the circumstances and the main consequences of the Treaty signed between King D Alfonso V and Prince D. João (future D. João II) by Portugal side and the Catholic Kings, D. Fernando and D. Isabel by Castile. There will be a visit to the factory Pardalinho Rattles, where visitors will be able to watch the Rattle Production, classified in 2015 as Intangible Heritage of Humanity, by UNESCO. Before lunch in a local restaurant with traditional Alentejo menu, visitors will still have the opportunity to get to know one of the most important economic activities of the village – the “Conventual Confectionery of Alcáçovas”.

After lunch, the tour will take the participants to Evoramonte Castle. Here, Tour participants will visit some of the most important examples of the Castle’s rich religious, civil and military patrimony: the Torre/Paço de Evoramonte, a national monument since 1911, unique in its style throughout the Iberian Peninsula, a work attributed to the Arrudas Architects by order of D. Teodósio and D. Jaime, the first Dukes of the House of Bragança; the Church of Santa Maria, currently dedicated to Nª. Sra. da Conceição, dating from the 12th century and the Chapel of Mercy built in the first half of the sixteenth century and in which highlights the central nave completely tiled with tiles from the mid-eighteenth century. In Evoramonte, participants will also attend a Historical Representation on the circumstances that led to the signing of the Convention of Evoramonte, between the liberals led by D. Pedro and the absolutists commanded by his brother D. Miguel and who put an end to the only civil war Portugal knew in its almost 900 years of history.

The Tour will end in the best way: a Thematic Dinner based on recipes collected by the well-known Portuguese Historian and Gastronomic Dr. Alfredo Saramago. Empadão de Pigeons Braves and Pork Loin with Honey and Rosemary will be the main dishes of a dinner served in environment of the time of the Convention.

Reservations can be made at the headquarters of RSI-Viagens in Estremoz or in the branch office in Évora (Edifício Santa Catarina, 12 – store 6), through the website www.rs-viagens.com, emails info.estremoz@rs-viagens. pt and info.evora@rs-viagens.pt or by phone +351 268 333 228 and +351 266 747 871.

Claudia Tapardel, a Romanian MEP who is a member of the Committee on Transport and Tourism of the European Parliament and of the St. James Ways and Other Cultural Routes Intergroup of the same Parliament sent a recorded message to the 11th ENPP Meeting held on 4 May in the city of Bucharest since due to agenda issues she wasn’t able to personally attend the Meeting as she wished.