Friday , 2 December 2022

Eyewitnesses Describe Sharif University Siege

Iranwire – Videos and reports surfacing on social media show that Sharif University in Tehran has been surrounded by security forces who have laid siege to the campus. The social media channels of Tehran University Students said that plainclothes officers appeared at the university, who shot at students with shotguns and plastic bullets, and arrested at least a hundred Sharif students and professors.

Videos and reports surfacing on social media show that Sharif University in Tehran has been surrounded by security forces who have laid siege to the campus

خبر فوری؛
شرایط در دانشگاه صنعتی شریف تهران بحرانی گزارش شده است. به نوشته کانال تلگرام دانشجویان این دانشگاه، نیروهای امنیتی دانشگاه را محاصره کرده‌اند. در این ویدیو، نیروهای امنیتی و لباس شخصی دانشجویان را در پارکینگ دانشگاه تعقیب می‌کنند.#مهسا_امینی #اعتراضات_سراسری— ایران وایر (@iranwire) October 2, 2022

The reports said that students and professors were also beaten in clashes. Eyewitnesses said students were being shot at from one side while tear gas was fired at them from behind. One of the videos shows fighting between the plainclothes officers and students in the parking lot of Sharif University.

Pictures have also been published showing the presence of the Minister of Science, Mohammad Ali Zulfigol, at the university.

در پی بحرانی‌تر شدن وضعیت دانشجویان در دانشگاه صنعتی #شریف، محمدعلی زلفی‌گل، وزیر علوم دولت رئیسی دقایقی پیش وارد این دانشگاه شد. گزارش‌های کانال دانشجویان دانشگاه شریف از ضرب و شتم شدید اساتید این دانشگاه به وسیله عوامل جمهوری اسلامی حکایت دارد.
#مهسا_امینی #اعتصابات_سراسری— ایران وایر (@iranwire) October 2, 2022

Protests in Iran continue into their third week as eyewitnesses from Sharif University of Technology, in Tehran, said that on Sunday evening, October 2, that security forces attacked the university where students had been staging a sit-in. Students were beaten and fired on with shotguns. One informed source from within Sharif University told IranWire that no one had been killed so far but many were injured. The security situation meant that no injured individuals had been taken to hospital.

A Tehran citizen has told IranWire that large numbers of people drove to Sharif University, honking their horns, in an effort to save the besieged students inside the campus. Social media channels had been awash with calls for help by students – with messages such as “Do not allow the security forces to kill and arrest students.”

Media reports inside also said that Minister Mohammad Ali Zolfigol visited the university in an effort to calm the situation.

One person inside Sharif told IranWire: “Outside the university, quite serious clashes are going on in different areas [in front of the entrance and at the main door and the parking lot] and we had taken shelter inside the university to be safe. Uniformed forces were waiting at a distance to arrest anyone who left the university.”

This person, who was inside the university during the conflict, added: “I am very worried, I don’t know what to do, but I hope that the year 1999 [the date of a previous serious clash between students and security forces] will not happen again.”

IranWire previously published a short film, Iran’s Bloody Friday, about the attack on a university dorm in 1999 during student protests.

One Twitter user, whose account name is not mentioned in this report to protect it, said: “Now that I was able to get out of Sharif University, I need to write a story about what happened in the university tonight.”

This user described the atmosphere in Sharif University of Technology on Sunday night as follows: “At 6:15pm, a number of students were leaving the university through the Energy Department door. Before this moment, the atmosphere of the university was inflamed. But whatever happened was inside the university and limited to the students and the security.”

This student added: “Sharif University is divided into two sections: from the Energy Department doors upwards, there are the Mechanics and Management Faculties, and then there is the Taimouri Square and then the street. When the students were led out of the Energy door, Ghasemi Street was full of uniformed forces, but some of Sharif’s professors did not allow anyone to approach the students by creating a human chain.

“When the students go to the north side of the university,” the source said, “the police stopped them and said they have to go back inside the university because plainclothes officers are standing in the square, and they told the police that if anyone enters the square, they will shoot them. In short, most of the students returned to the university, except for a few who insisted on leaving. The north door of the university was closed. Unfortunately, those students who stayed outside could not enter the square and the crowd forced them to enter the underground Sharif parking lot. We don’t know about their fate, but as some people said, unfortunately, agents in plainclothes entered the parking lot and fired shots. I cannot confirm this. When we got back inside the university, we scattered to different faculties. An hour later, I went to the main entrance of the university on Azadi Avenue, which was also blocked by special police forces. A few minutes later, the Minister of Science entered the university and talked to the special forces so that we could leave the university. I came out, but some students are still locked up in the university and can’t speak out.”

This user further wrote: “I heard that the students were being shot in the parking lot.”

Another user on Twitter described the story of one of the students of Sharif University who was present at this university on Sunday: “We were in the library, the windows were open. One of the plainclothes officers started shooting at the library [possibly with pellets not bullets]. Several students were shot, and one person was hit in the eye, and was bleeding.”

According to Article 27 of the Iranian Constitution, “organizing gatherings and marches is free, without carrying weapons, as long as it does not disturb the principles of Islam.”

This principle does not have any interpretation or notes and clearly and explicitly recognizes the right of citizens to protest in any part of the country. But the issue has become one of the legal challenges in the country for a long time.

Following nationwide protests against the killing of Mahsa Amini, a bloody suppression of protesters has occurred in Iran over the past two weeks. The government’s efforts to create an atmosphere of terror in all Iranian cities continues, but protesters also continue to come out to the streets. Demonstrators from Ardabil in the northwest of Iran to Zahedan in the southeast of the country chant slogans against the regime of the Islamic Republic. Support for these protests continues outside Iran. Fifty-four member countries of the United Nations Human Rights Council, on September 30, in a joint statement, asked Iran to start a detailed, transparent and impartial investigation into the death of Mahsa Amini and to stop the violence against protesters. And on Saturday, October 1, for the first time, the Iranian diaspora held a global demonstration in support of protesters inside Iran.