Home | News    Saturday 19 June 2004

Family of Sudan’s Islamist leader appeal for help

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KHARTOUM, June 19, 2004 (dpa) — The family of Sudanese Islamist leader Hassan Abdalla Turabi appealed Saturday to the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) to help free him from nearly three months’ detention.

His son Essam told SPLM leader John Garang that "we want the SPLM to do something about him" as the family believed the movement could reduce threats to his life.

Turabi is the leader of the opposition Islamist Popular Congress party and was first arrested in 2001 under the emergency law imposed by President Omar Hassan al-Bashir.

His family also expressed regret about a decision to isolate him from other detainees. Essam told Deutsche Presse-Agenutur dpa the government was building a big wall around his father’s cell in Sudan’s central prison in the Bahri district of Khartoum. Last week, Turabi was rumoured to have died while imprisoned.

Essam said negotiations were under way with the SPLM to coordinate efforts following the signing of a comprehensive peace deal between south and north Sudan.

Security measures were tightened in Khartoum earlier this month following the signing of the Nairobi declaration, marking an end to 21 years of civil war.

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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