Vigil to be held Friday for Princeton University student imprisoned in Iran

Xiyue Wang with his family before he went to Iran. Family photo via Princeton University.

Colleagues and friends of the Princeton University graduate student who has been imprisoned in Iran for the last 13 months will hold a vigil to show their support for him on Friday night.

Xiyue Wang is a doctoral student in the history department. He visited Iran between January and March of 2016 to attend a Farsi language program, and he returned in May of 2016 to continue his language studies and conduct research for his dissertation on 19th century Eurasia. That August he was arrested on charges of espionage, and in April of 2017, he was sentenced to ten years’ imprisonment. This verdict was upheld on appeal this August.

After the most recent announcement by the Iranian judiciary, Princeton students and other
members of the university community decided to organize a vigil to show their support for their
friend and colleague, and their hopes that Xiyue Wang will return soon to his family and friends.

Wang’s wife, Hua Qu, will speak at the vigil, as will Stephen Kotkin, Wang’s adviser. The vigil, which the public is welcome to attend, will be held at 7 p.m. in the East Pyne Courtyard on the Princeton University campus.