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UN expert to Sudan urged to probe activists torture claims

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June 17, 2014 (KHARTOUM) - Families of the victims and detainees of the protests which took place last September have asked the UN Independent Expert, to visit the detention centres of the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) in Khartoum north to stand on the brutal torture suffered by their sons.

The UN Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Sudan, Mashood Baderin is in the Sudanese capital since Sunday for talks on the Sudanese government officials on the developments occurred since his last visit to Sudan in February of this year.

In September 2013, protests erupted in Sudan’s major towns following a decision by the government to lift subsidies on fuel and other basic commodities, leading to calls for regime change.

At least 200 protesters died, 15 of them children, and more than 800 others have been detained.

The leading figure at the Sudanese Communist Party (SCP) and chairman of the committee of solidarity with the victims and detainees of the protests, Siddiq Youssef, accused the National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR) of failing to provide the necessary legal protection for the detainees.

He disclosed in a press conference on Tuesday that his committee met with the justice minister, Mohamed Bushara Dousa, to discuss the cases of protesters being held since September 25.

Families of detained students and activists affirmed their sons were subjected to “brutal torture” at the NISS detention centres, holding NISS responsible for the physical and psychological wellness of their sons.

The mothers of the detainees, Mohamed Salah, and Taj al-Sir Ja’afar, said in the press conference that their sons were subjected to brutal torture at NISS’s detention centres.

Sabah Osman, mother of Taj al-Sir Ja’afar, said she saw traces of whips on the back of her son besides swelling in his face and hands when she visited him in the NISS detention facility, noting her son cannot stand up for a long time due to torture.

She held NISS responsible for her son’s physical and mental wellness.

Zaineb Badr al-Din, mother of Mohamed Salah, for her part, said her son suffers from several diseases, pointing that NISS refused to allow him take his drugs.

She said her son was tortured at the NISS detention facility in Khartoum north, pointing she noticed traces of beating on his face and a big hit in the middle of his head.

Badr al-Din stressed her son’s right eye lost sight and a medical band was wrapped around his leg, underscoring that NISS intended to liquidate her son physically.

She held NISS responsible for the safety of her son and all detainees.

Last May, NISS carried out a massive arrest campaign against pro-opposition students amid escalating violence at the University of Khartoum (UofK).

The detained students included Tag al-Sir Ja’afar from the New Forces Movement (NFM), Muamar Musa from the Reform Now Party (RNP) and Mohamed Salah from the Democratic Front (DM) which is the students’ arm of the communist party.

Late last month, NISS prevented activists and families of the detainees from protesting and submitting a memorandum to the National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR) calling for the immediate release of political prisoners and stop of human rights violations throughout the country.

The memo mentioned 14 violations committed since 27 January when the presidency announced allowing public freedoms in the country.

Those violations included detention of the UofK students, releasing only 5 detainees while 25 others are still imprisoned besides sentencing a woman accused of apostasy to death.

On 15 May, a Khartoum court sentenced 27-year-old Meriam Yehya Ibrahim to death by hanging for apostasy after she refused to recant her faith and revert to Islam.

(ST)

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