SAR’s Academic Freedom Monitoring Project investigates and reports attacks on higher education with the aim of raising awareness, generating advocacy, and increasing protection for scholars, students, and academic communities. Learn more.


Attack Types


Date Range


Date of Incident: January 14, 2022

Region & Country:Southeastern Asia | Thailand

Institution(s):Chiang Mai University

On January 14, 2022, Thai police arrested two Chiang Mai University (CMU) students peacefully protesting outside an on-campus graduation ceremony. On January 11, the CMU Student Union Policy Team announced via Facebook a boycott of the upcoming graduation ceremony, which was ...

Attack Types: Imprisonment

Date of Incident: January 10, 2022

Region & Country:Southern Asia | India

Institution(s):Government Engineering College, Idukki

On January 10, 2022, a student was killed amid clashes that broke out between members of the Students Federation of India and the Kerala Students Union at Government Engineering College, Idukki. According to police, students clashed on campus when college union ...

Attack Types: Killings, Violence, Disappearances

Date of Incident: January 08, 2022

Region & Country:Southern Asia | Afghanistan

Institution(s):Kabul University

On January 8, 2022, Taliban forces arrested Kabul University lecturer and political commentator Faizullah Jalal at his home and took him to an unknown location, apparently for his public criticism of the Taliban government. Jalal has been a well-known political commentator ...

Attack Types: Imprisonment

Date of Incident: December 16, 2021

Region & Country:Eastern Asia | China

Institution(s):Qingdao University

On December 16, 2021, Qingdao University revoked the teaching license of Gao Weijia and transferred her to a non-teaching position in apparent retaliation for a statement she made on social media. A week earlier, Gao published a social media post in ...

Attack Types: Loss of Position

Date of Incident: December 16, 2021

Region & Country:Eastern Asia | China

Institution(s):Shanghai Aurora College

On December 16, 2021, Shanghai Aurora College officials announced that Song Gengyi, a journalism lecturer, had been fired after giving a lecture in which she questioned the accuracy of the official death toll relating to the 1937 Nanjing Massacre, in ...

Attack Types: Loss of Position

Date of Incident: December 14, 2021

Region & Country:Western Asia | Palestine (OPT)

Institution(s):Birzeit University

Early in the morning on December 14, 2021, Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) raided Birzeit University campus, assaulting guards, damaging university property, confiscating students’ belongings, and sparking violent clashes. According to a statement by the university, roughly 100 Israeli soldiers broke through ...

Attack Types: Other | Violence

Date of Incident: December 07, 2021

Region & Country:Southern Asia | Iran

Institution(s):Yale University

On December 7, 2021, sociology professor and former political prisoner Saeed Madani was prevented from leaving Iran to begin a one-year research post at Yale University, in the United States. Madani previously worked as a professor at the University of Social ...

Attack Types: Travel Restrictions

Date of Incident: November 20, 2021

Region & Country:Western Asia | Kuwait

Institution(s):Kuwait University

On November 20, 2021, Kuwaiti national security agents interrogated Dr. Safaa Zaman – a professor for the Faculty of Computer Science and Engineering at Kuwait University and the president of the Kuwait Association for Information Security – about an interview ...

Attack Types: Prosecution

Date of Incident: November 17, 2021

Region & Country:Southern Asia | India


On November 17, police in Madurai arrested 150 college students and opened cases against over 700 others for participating in protests calling for online exams. On November 15, students at The American College in the city of Madurai launched protests responding ...

Attack Types: Imprisonment | Prosecution

Date of Incident: November 16, 2021

Region & Country:Americas | United States of America

Institution(s):Old Dominion University

On November 16, 2021, Old Dominion University (ODU) placed Allyn Walker, an assistant professor of sociology and criminology, on administrative leave following public pressure and threats directed at Walker in response to their scholarship. Walker eventually announced in a joint ...

Attack Types: Loss of Position