We, the members of the Global Young Academy, are extremely concerned about the imminent danger to students’ and scholars’ lives at schools and universities in Iran.
We call for an immediate cessation of violence against students and all other peaceful protests which have evolved since mid-September in Iran.
- The rights to freedom of opinion, expression, peaceful assembly, and association as guaranteed by the Universal Declaration of Human rights[i] have to be fully respected.
- The government needs to restore peace at the universities and release all those arrested. We call for the full respect of the independence and freedom of science in Iran, which is globally accepted and enshrined in the right to science in Article 15 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights[ii], which Iran has signed and ratified.
- Internet access needs to be fully restored. The disruption to communications services undermines numerous human rights, notably the right to freedom of expression. The internet has been developed by the global scientific community and we insist to be further able to work and exchange with our colleagues in Iran.
- We insist that gender equality, besides being a fundamental human right, is essential for development, not only of the sciences, but the entire society.
As a global group of early-career researchers – 50 percent of whom are female – we are especially in solidarity with the many brave women who demonstrate under the slogan “Women, Life, Freedom” and contribute to the revision of a body of state policies and laws that discriminate mainly regarding gender, race and religion, and systematically restrict the civic space.[iii]
We call on all members and institutions of the academic community to join our demand for an end of violence and the breaches of fundamental human rights in Iran, and to:
- Support especially Iranian women to freely conduct their research.
- Offer or prolong research grants and other programmes for Iranian students and scholars who presently cannot return to Iran.
[i] United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Available here: https://www.un.org/en/about-us/universal-declaration-of-human-rights
[ii] United Nations International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Available here: https://www.ohchr.org/en/instruments-mechanisms/instruments/international-covenant-economic-social-and-cultural-rights
[iii] See recent reports of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, who is mandated by the United Nations Human Rights Council. Available here: https://www.ohchr.org/en/special-procedures/sr-iran