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 29, 2022

Attack Types: Killings, Violence, Disappearances | Imprisonment

Institution(s):Azad University of Mashhad

Region & Country:Southern Asia | Iran

New or Ongoing:New Incident

On October 29, 2022, security forces surrounded the Mashhad branch of Azad University. They violently attacked, and arrested several students.

The students were protesting on campus and demanding justice for Mahsa Amini, who died while in custody of the “morality police” in September 2022, and all those killed by the police.

Scholars at Risk is concerned about violence by state security forces and the arbitrary arrest of students for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of expression and association – conduct which is protected by international human rights instruments including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Iran is a signatory. In addition to harm to the immediate victims, such use of violence and arbitrary arrests undermine academic freedom, institutional autonomy, and democratic society generally.

*SAR identified this incident in data made publicly available by the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED)