Iranian authorities have resorted to the use of violence in response to the university protests in Iran. I would like to reiterate what I have already stated on my Twitter account: The violence must be condemned and brought to an immediate halt.
The Association of Swedish Higher Education Institutions (SUHF) – of which KI is a member – has issued a statement which expresses our grave concern for the current situation faced by students and staff at Iranian universities. Many of my fellow colleagues at Swedish and international higher education institutions have firmly and publicly condemned the violent actions taken by the Iranian authorities.
We are deeply worried by reports of attacks on students and staff at universities in Iran. At the Sharif University of Technology in Tehran, Iranian security forces have shot and fired teargas at students.
The bravery and dedication shown by Iranian students and academics command respect. The Iranian regime has a long and sad history of repressing human rights, not least the rights of women. In this perspective the current protests are admirable and extraordinary and deserving of international support.
Harassment and outright violence have absolutely no place on a university campus. My message to the Iranian regime is crystal clear: restore academic freedom and human rights, including the right to freedom of expression and non-violent protest.
In other words, and in the simplest of terms: Stop the violence. And let people lead normal lives.