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Sudanese doctors released after end of their strike

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June 26, 2010 (KHARTOUM) — Sudanese authorities Thursday released six doctors arrested earlier this month because they were members of Doctors Strike Committee that was organising a strike to ask for better conditions for doctors in Sudan.

Their release came with the end of the strike and return of doctor to work on Thursday 24 June.

The released doctors are : Ahmed Alabwabi, Alhadi Bakhit, Abdelaziz Ali Jamee, Ahmed Abdallah Khalafallah, Ashraf Hammad and Mahmoud Khairallah Mohammed.

Chairman of the Sudanese Medical Society, Prof. Abdel-Azim Kaballo, said that the end of the strike came after an agreement reached through a joint initiative of the federal Ministry of Health, the Sudanese Medical Society and the Doctors Strike Committee.

He further underlined the commitment of the Ministry of Health to implement all the signed agreements to improve the conditions of service of doctors and to implement the presidential decree in this repect.

The six doctors were arrested between 1 June and 8 June by the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) in relation to the strike.

Two of the doctors were tortured during their initial detention by the NISS. The Sudanese authorities have so far not initiated any investigations into the allegations of torture.

The doctors were held at an unknown location and none of them were charged.

Doctors across Sudan went on strike on 2 June to protest the arrest of their colleagues by the NISS. The strike action failed to secure better conditions for doctors in Sudan. The authorities are reported to have promised that they would release the detained doctors should the striking doctors resume their duties.

NISS agents reportedly roamed the hospitals in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, ensuring that the doctors had returned to work and later that night the six doctors were released.

(ST)

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