Iranian students blackmailed, “vote and get high degrees”

In this footage, an Iranian student queuing to vote in the country’s latest sham election says: “I am university student and in order for me to receive my graduation degree from the University, the university officials made it mandatory for us to vote; when we want to get our degree certificate, the officials will double check our ID to see if we voted and if there are stamps showing that we voted before they’ll agree to give us our degrees.”

The young man and other university students in this clip are frustrated since they didn’t have any chance to cast their votes due to the long queues of people waiting to vote. He continues, “My intention to vote doesn’t mean I support any candidate, no – it’s not like that; what I’m seeking is to cast my vote, even just a blank paper, to get a stamp in my ID card showing that I voted to avoid facing trouble with officials of university when the time arrives for me to get my degree afterwards.”

He goes on: “I came here to cast my vote in the ballot box, I came back ten, twenty, thirty times, but they didn’t allow to get into the building to cast my vote.  There is no place inside they selectively take a few people inside to vote.

I don’t know what is the ethnicity of this officer who stands in front of the building and picks those that he likes to take inside. There might be about 50 people waiting. I personally don’t want to vote for a certain candidate. I just want to vote to get my university degree because the university officials have said that in order for us to get our degrees we need to vote and have a stamp on our ID; that’s all I am looking for. I don’t want to vote for any particular candidate – as you can see, all these people who are waiting in line here have the same intention, and they just want to have a stamp to prove that they voted in order to get their degrees. All of us here are just wanting a stamp.  You can hear people saying, what we want is to vote just to leave a stamp on our ID.  

The reporter asks the people who are gathered there to see if there is still a chance to vote and they say: “We’ve been here since 8 am but we couldn’t vote. As you see, an official from the window of the building selectively calls people in to vote and allow them to get inside.”