Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi

Conservative cleric Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi has denounced plans to halt gender segregation to Iranian university classes and the aggressive ousting of professors.

He expressed grave disappointment that the Minister of Science is abandoning his two initiatives, namely "to retire professors that question the principles of religion" and "to gradually and basically separate girls and boys in universities." The cleric blamed Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for the decision.

On Tuesday, Ahmadinejad sent letters to the Minister of Science and the Minister of Health, telling them to refrain from "gender segregation" and "the inappropriate retiring of professors" until specific guidelines for these initiatives can been approved by the Council of Cultural Revolution.

Minister of Science Kamran Daneshjoo responded promptly to the president’s demands, promising full compliance.
He stressed, however, that Ahmadinejad is not opposed to bringing universities more in line with Islamic principles, he is merely cautious about hasty and incomplete solutions.