On 25 November, EUA President Michael Murphy expressed grave concern for the well-being of Dr Ahmadreza Djalali in a letter addressed to the Iranian leadership.
Dr Djalali, an Iranian-Swedish scholar of disaster medicine, faces an imminent risk of execution. Based on information from Scholars at Risk (SAR) and Amnesty International, Iranian authorities recently put Dr Djalali in solitary confinement and are preparing to carry out his death sentence at any moment. EUA urges the Iranian authorities to suspend the capital sentence issued against Dr. Amadreza Djalali and to secure his immediate release.
EUA has requested for the release of Dr Djalali on multiple occasions. Arrested in April 2016 while he was traveling to participate in a series of workshops hosted by universities in Tehran and Shiraz, Dr Djalali was later convicted and sentenced to death for “corruption on earth”, based on unsubstantiated allegations that he had provided intelligence to the Israeli authorities. Dr Djalali has disputed the allegations, asserting that his ties to the international academic community are the basis of his prosecution. Before his arrest, Dr Djalali taught at universities in Italy, Belgium and Sweden, including Karolinska University, Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale, and Vrije Universiteit Brussel.
EUA is urging all members to send their own letter to the Iranian authorities to state their support for the release of the imprisoned scholar and the suspension of his death sentence. The Association strongly condemns the egregious violation of judicial norms and Dr Djalali’s rights, which demonstrates a troubling disregard for international standards of academic freedom, due process, fair trial, and humane treatment of prisoners, as guaranteed in the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights”, to which Iran is a party.