The European University Association (EUA) is gravely concerned about the arbitrary and unjust imprisonment in Iran of Princeton University graduate student Xiyue Wang, now in its third year. The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention concluded that Iran had no legal basis for his arrest and detention and called for Mr. Wang’s immediate release. EUA, which represents more than 800 universities and national university associations in 48 European countries, joins in appealing to the Iranian authorities to free him without delay.
Mr. Wang was a graduate student in history studying Farsi and Persian history when he was detained in the summer of 2016 on unsubstantiated and meritless charges. The Iranian judiciary announced his conviction and sentence in July 2017. EUA denounces this alarming violation of academic freedom, due process and fair trial, which are fundamental and internationally recognised rights and standards. Mr. Wang’s imprisonment is deeply troubling for scholars around the world and has a chilling effect on historical research and all scholarly exchange. EUA therefore stands with scientists, universities and others around the world in deploring Mr. Wang's imprisonment and in urging his immediately release and return to his family and scholarly work.