Mahnoush Shafi’i, a Baha’i, Has Been Expelled from University

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Translation by Iran Press Watch


According to the “No to Oppression and Imprisonment of Our Fellow Iranian Baha’is” Campaign, the Associate Degree of Mahnoush Shafi’i was revoked by Samangan University officials once her expulsion order from Samangan University was issued because of her belief in the Baha’i Faith.

Regarding the revoking of her university degree, this Baha’i student says: “I am part of Samangan University, Amol Campus, the 2009 Business Administration cohort.  I studied at this University for two years and completed the associate degree program. I then registered for a Bachelor’s degree at the same University, and enrolled at Imam Khomeini School of Applied Sciences in Mohammadshahr in Karaj, when the university called me, on Monday December 21, 2015, around 2 pm.

They said: “Miss Mahnoush Shafi’i-Mehr, you are no longer allowed to attend class.” I insisted that they state a reason for this, but they said they can only discuss the reason in person.  I continued to insist and they asked me what I had indicated in the religion section of the form.  I answered: “Baha’i”.

They said: “It is for this reason that you cannot attend class anymore.”  Later when I was able to speak with them in person, the security and intelligence officer told us that he had received orders to confiscate my Associate Degree, and that they had not noticed I was a Baha’i previously ‒ otherwise I would have been expelled earlier.

He continued: “Now we will give you your Associate Degree, and we will tell the higher-ranked officials that we didn’t know at the time, and gave you your Diploma; this will keep them from revoking your Diploma. However, you can no longer study for your Bachelor’s degree, as you have been expelled.”

When I asked for a document indicating that I had been expelled, the officials ignored my request and gave me no proof of my expulsion.

The Islamic Revolution of Iran does not recognize the Baha’i Faith as a religion, and does not recognize the rights of its followers.

Baha’is in Iran have many restrictions, including being banned from university education and barred from holding various types of jobs.

Sections of the first paragraph of Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, of which Iran is a signatory, clearly states that “equal access to higher education for all people shall be on the basis of individual merit.”  Additionally, under the first paragraph of the UNESCO Convention against Discrimination in Education,  any other deprivation and restriction on the basis of language, religion, political ideology or other ideology has been abolished.


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