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Iran: Students protesting against martyrs re-burial are jailed

ak11

Up to 70 students from the Amir Kabir University in Tehran were arrested today, Tuesday 24th of February, while protesting against the re-burial of five anonymous Iran-Iraq War martyrs in the grounds of the university. Students have published several videos and photos of the demonstration in a student news website, Amir Kabir News. Several bloggers have reported on this event, showing a diverse range of opinions and bringing personal accounts.

Below is a video of the protest in Amir Kabir University, where students compared the Iranian government to the Afghan Taliban and chanted: “Down with the Taliban!”

In this other video, security forces are shown “attacking protesting students”, according to Amir Kabir News:

Several bloggers, such as Jdaneshjoo, have published [fa] a declaration made by the Islamic Association of students of Amirk Abir University about the recent event. This Student Association disapproves the authorities’ decision to bury the anonymous martyrs in the grounds of the university, and claims it is an excuse for security forces to maintain their presence in this university, repressing more than ever the student movements.

Ghomar Asheghane says the authorities want to turn the university into a cemetery and adds [fa]:

دانش‌گاه را با قبرستان اشتباه گرفته‌اند؛ که نه؛ می‌خواهند قبرستان‌اش کنند. همین که بسیاری از دانش‌جویان یا در زندان هستند … دانش‌گاه را تبدیل به قبرستان کرده است. همین که بسیاری از اساتید برجسته با کارنامه‌های ممتاز علمی از دادن درس و آموزش محروم می‌شوند خود دانش‌گاه را تبدیل به قبرستان کرده است. همین که احمدی‌نژاد جرات نمی‌کند با دانش‌جویان دیدار کند و در روز تعطیل به دانش‌گاه می‌رود، خود دلیلی است برای قبرستان کردن دانش گاه

They do not confuse the university with the cemetery but they want to turn the university into a cemetery. Following the news that many students are in prison, other students have been banned from the universities… some distinguished university professors with excellent scientific backgrounds are no longer allowed to teach and [the president] Ahmadinejad does not dare to meet up with students and to go to the university on holidays, showing that the university has already become a cemetery.

Jomhour says that the students have been against this project because the authorities have used the war martyrs as an instrument to achieve their own political interests. He adds [fa] that the conservative Farsi news websites have published provoking stories and, in the end, students were beaten and arrested.

Hezbollah blog has a different opinion and says [fa] that some of the students — who are attending university thanks to the government's financial support — started to chant “down with the dictator”, “down with Basijis”… Writing with irony, the blogger adds that even in these days talking about martyrs is a shame. He concludes: “I do not know where we would be and what would have happened to us if these martyrs did not go to war.”

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