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Beaten Iranian university chancellor says his capture was pre-planned

Tehran, Nov 3, IRNA -- Chancellor of the University of Science and Technology Mohammad-Taqi Salehi said that he had been held hostage by a number of students according to a pre-planned plot.


He told IRNA that the incident seems to have taken place according to a plan prepared in advance by a group of students.

Elaborating on the incident, Salehi who is now hospitalized at Tehran's Khatamolanbia Hospital said that upon leaving his office he encountered about 30 students who asked him for an appointment to meet him.

Despite his approval of their request, he added, the students rushed towards him, beat him up, and dragged him towards a a bus parked nearby.

Then the students made a few telephone calls and drove towards the building of the Ministry of Sciences, Research and Technology, he noted.

According to the chancellor, he was released after two hours following the negotiations between the hostage-takers and police forces.

Students protest and condemn the attack

Asked whether his hostage-taking had anything to do with a ceremony in the university which was to be addressed by two reformists, he said the ceremony went ahead well quietly and it seems that the incident had nothing to do with it.

He further regretted that certain people were taking advantage the university compound as a means to achieve their own goals. He said he no longer felt secure in the university because of the incident which in fact was an insult to all academics.

Government Spokesman Abdollah Ramezanzadeh here Wednesday urged that those behind hostage-taking incident should be prosecuted.

He said the government considered such provocations uncivil, nonethical and against the principles of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

However, he expressed satisfaction that the move has been condemned by all student movements.

The spokesman said nothing as to identifications of the culprits responsible for the act.

A group of students in objection to the speech of Ibrahim Yazdi and Mostafa Tajzadeh at the University of Science and Technology on Tuesday beat the chancellor and took him hostage for three hours.

According to one of the statements issued by the scientific faculty of the university, Salehi was kidnapped on a confiscated bus.

"He was held hostage for a few hours and beaten violently while the incident was witnessed by the passersby. Salehi was taken to hospital on Tuesday night, once his physical and mental condition deteriorated after being beaten," it added.

The statement also called on students to stay calm and avoid unreasonable reactions that may prepare the grounds for abuse by opportunists.

... Payvand News - 11/4/04 ... --

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