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.

Date of Incident: October 26, 2015

Attack Types: Killings, Violence, Disappearances | Other

Institution(s):University of Aden

Region & Country:Western Asia | Yemen

New or Ongoing:New Incident

On October 26, 2015, ISIS fighters reportedly issued a public threat to students at the University of Aden in Yemen, demanding that the campus become sex segregated, banning music from campus, and insisting that students pray collectively on campus.

The demands were made in a leaflet, reportedly signed by members of ISIS, and distributed by armed individuals to students in at least three departments on campus.  Students were given until Thursday, October 29, 2015, to comply with these demands.  Failing to do so, the leaflet said, would result in retaliation in the form of car- and petrol- bombings.

Scholars at Risk is concerned about threats of violence and intimidation on campus, and about attempts to limit freedom of religion and association. Actions limiting the rights to free expression or association on campus have a chilling effect on academic freedom and university autonomy, and undermine democratic society generally.