NewsSpecial WireIran’s hard-liners target universities as massive purges go on

Iran’s hard-liners target universities as massive purges go on

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Iran Focus: Tehran, Iran, Nov. 19 – A senior Iranian cleric’s call on Saturday for a purge of “anti-Islamic and atheist” university professors is being seen in the Iranian capital as a clear signal that the massive purges launched by the dominant hard-line faction are now moving on to universities. Iran Focus

Tehran, Iran, Nov. 19 – A senior Iranian cleric’s call on Saturday for a purge of “anti-Islamic and atheist” university professors is being seen in the Iranian capital as a clear signal that the massive purges launched by the dominant hard-line faction are now moving on to universities.

Ayatollah Hossein Nouri Hamedani said in a meeting with Iran’s Education Minister, “We must purge universities of anti-Islamic and atheist professors”.

Nouri Hamedani, a senior cleric based in the holy Shiite city of Qom, said that “devout” professors had to be employed at universities to increase students’ spirituality.

Nouri Hamedani’s comments come at a time when senior figures such as former President Ali-Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani have publicly complained about the extensive purges now underway throughout the bureaucracy. Many of Rafsanjani’s protégés have been removed from their positions by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s allies.

“In the past 10 years, our universities’ curricula had been set up in such a way that there was an air of pro-Western inclination. But, in the present circumstances, we must change this state of affairs”, he said.

“We must not allow for Western thinking to rule centres of science and the country’s universities”.

“Universities are important and sensitive centres which educate the officials of the Islamic Republic. Therefore, if universities are not Islamic, we will face problems in the future”.

“Following the election of Dr. [Mahmoud”> Ahmadinejad as president, there has been a deep unity between theological seminaries and universities”.

Hojjatoleslam Mohsen Qomi, the representative of the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in the country’s universities, also said, “If religious seminaries help universities, then enemies can not take our values under question by creating various political currents”.

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