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Iran professors risk prison to voice protest

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posted on Jan, 6 2010 @ 04:17 AM

A group of academics have braved the risk of imprisonment to criticise Iran's crackdown on protestors in an open letter to the country's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The 88 professors at Tehran University who signed the letter have risked their careers and their freedom by speaking out against the treatment of opposition supporters at the hands of government forces.

Iranian students led anti-government demonstrations last month, with at least eight people dying in clashes between the opposition and government forces in the worst period of bloodshed since the controversial June election; the nephew of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi among them.

"Night-time attacks on defenceless student dormitories and daytime assaults on students is not a sign of strength," said the letter.
"Nor is beating up students and their mass imprisonment."
"Unfortunately, all these [attacks] were carried out under the pretext of protecting Islam."

An Iran news website translated another passage from the original Farsi:
"It is still very difficult for us to accept that a group with several tools and weapons and with previous coordination can attack the university and for two subsequent days beat and hit students – the pure sons and daughters of this land – destroy public properties, insult the university professors and disrespect the centre of country's engineering."

The full letter, in Farsi, has been published online at AUT News.
It includes the names of all 88 signatories.

I commend the bravery of these academics for standing up against the regime and supporting the truth versus letting these matters disappear under a cloak of invisibility because of the fear of being imprisoned. No doubt the revolutionary guards will arrest some of these professors and probably torture and execute them, but will only add credibility to the words of these professors, and bring further illegitimacy to the collapsing regime. If the professors aren't arrested, then the collapsing regime looks weak.

[edit on 6-1-2010 by john124]


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