Yet more participants in this year’s Iranian national university entrance exams have been barred from taking part due to being Baha’is, human rights activists say. HRANA news agency has so far gathered a list of seven names of affected young people, with more expected to follow.
The seven so far known to have been locked out of the exams were Elena Gholizadeh Roshankouhi, Nora Nabi Purklankari, Mesbah Misaghi, Parsa Charkhand, Forouzan Nikokar, Nasim Shahriari, and Mahsa Forouhari. They were prevented from undergoing the tests on a variety of pretexts, including “general competence”.
Stopping Baha’is from entering university is a long-standing institutional practice in the Islamic Republic. Last year at least 19 participants were stopped from entering the exams, or else from receiving their results, due to their stated adherence to the Baha'i faith.
In 2018 the Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution issued a secret decree ordering that Baha’is be prevented from entering higher education settings – and if found to be Baha’is after arriving, they should be expelled.