AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL: URGENT ACTION
TORTURE FEARS FOR MAN DISAPPEARED IN SUDAN
12 October 2012
Sudanese man Omaia Abdel Latif Hassan Omaia has not been heard from since his enforced disappearance in August 2012. He is detained incommunicado putting him at risk of torture or other ill-treatment. He has not been charged and continues to be denied access to his family and a lawyer.
Omaia Abdel Latif Hassan Omaia was last seen by his family on 22 August 2012 at 9:30 a.m. when he left his hometown Abu-Gebiha to travel to Tegmala in Southern Kordofan. At around 2 p.m. he was seen heading back to the bus stop to return home. According to eye witnesses, two people in plain clothes, believed to be agents of the National Intelligence and Security Services (NSS), forced him into a Land Cruiser and drove away.
His family were informed by reliable sources that Omaia Abdel Latif Hassan Omaia was seen in a hospital between 2:30 a.m. and 3 a.m. on 16 September 2012 in the Southern Kordofan administrative centre of Rashad. As a result, his family is increasingly concerned about his health. After several attempts to obtain information, a high level military official admitted he is detained and said he would try to arrange for access for family members, which has not yet happened. Reports indicate that Omaia Abdel Latif Hassan Omaia may be being held in the private house of a local authority.
Omaia Abdel Latif Hassan Omaia works for the Ministry of Finance in the state of Southern Kordofan and it is believed that he was targeted as a result of his involvement with the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – North (SPLM-N). He is the media representative of SPLM-N in Abu-Gebiha and the state authorities had warned him in July 2011 against political involvement with an armed movement. He was previously arrested in September 2011 with 30 other SPLM-N supporters and was released a week later without charge.
Omaia Abdel Latif Hassan Omaia’s enforced disappearance follows many incidents of arrests by the Sudanese authorities of intellectuals, activists, and other people perceived to be members of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N). Armed conflict broke out in Southern Kordofan in June 2011 between government forces and the armed opposition group SPLA-N, whose membership in Southern Kordofan is largely Nuba. Since then, the authorities have on numerous occasions arrested members of the SPLM-N and people believed to be member or supporters of the SPLM-N. They are frequently detained without for extended periods without charge or trial and without access to a lawyer or their families.