Iranian President Hassan Rowhani said on Monday that authorities should encourage academic freedom and that Iranian scholars should be given more opportunities to partake in conferences around the world.
The message from Rowhani is one of his strongest reproaches of the constraints imposed by hard-line forces in Iran on academia in the country.
Rowhani reportedly told Tehran University students and professors that it is “a shame” that some individuals and groups seek to limit open academic discourse.
He urged authorities not to block scholars from taking part in international gatherings of scholars, calling it “scientific diplomacy.”
Other suggestions to lift restrictions by the president have included calls to soften Internet restrictions and relax Islamic dress codes for women.
In recent years, the police have cracked down on perceived violations of Islamic dress codes by women. In addition, hard-liners, such as the Revolutionary Guard, have driven out professors and student activists from universities, according to the Associated Press.
(With the Associated Press)