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: November 13, 2022

Attack Types: Killings, Violence, Disappearances

Institution(s):University of Sulaimani

Region & Country:Western Asia | Iraq

New or Ongoing:New Incident

On November 13, 2022, police used tear gas and clashed with University of Sulaimani students protesting over student fees.

Student protesters had reportedly blocked a major highway in front of the campus, disrupting the flow of traffic. ANF reported that some students had blocked employees’ access to campus. The protest was otherwise described as peaceful.

The next day, the university reportedly suspended campus activities, citing alleged security concerns.

Scholars at Risk is concerned by police clashing with and using tear gas against peaceful student protesters. While state security forces have a responsibility to maintain order and safety, they also have an obligation to exercise restraint and refrain from disproportionate responses. In addition to the harm to the immediate victims, the use of force against peaceful student protesters undermines democratic society.

*SAR identified this incident in data made publicly available by the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED)كوردســتانيات/لحماية-رواح-الطلبة-تعليق-الدراسة-في-جامعة-السليمانيةكردستان/جامعة-السليمانية-تقرر-تعليق-الدراسة-ف/كردستان/b-84825