Former Professor Worries Uni Project Went ‘Beyond’ Academia

A former Durham University professor has alleged that a research project was used by America to gather intelligence on Iran.


A former Durham University professor has alleged that a research project was used by America to gather intelligence on Iran.

Dr Reza Molavi explained to ITV News Tyne Tees how the university received a grant of hundreds of thousands of dollars back in 2008 to bring Iranian officials and high-profile academics to the North East and introduce them to Americans.

Dr Molavi, former director of Durham’s Centre for Iranian Studies, expressed his concerns to ITV News Tyne Tees, suggesting that project went ‘beyond’ academia.

Iranian professor

The professor explained how he was worried that ‘America was using Durham to recruit sympathetic Iranians’, despite being portrayed as a ‘simple programme for academic learning, to build bridges between the US and Iran’.

Dr Molavi told ITV News Tyne Tees how he warned the university that America could ‘use Durham’s project as an excuse to meet useful Iranians’, but he chose to resign when they went ahead with the project anyway.

In a recent report, the university argued that it was just a research project, and that they take their duty of care very seriously.

Watch the ITV report here.