August 3, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese parliament has said it will summon the minister of information, Ahmed Bilal Osman, to question him over the official media’s coverage of the Israeli aggression on Gaza.
- Sudan’s parliament.
Following rocket attacks, the Israeli army launched on July 8 a large scale offensive on Gaza strip targeting the positions of Palestinian militants of Hamas and Jihadist groups but also hit densely populated towns.
Officials in Gaza estimate that 1,788 civilians, have been killed and 1.8 million residents displaced. They also say 3,000 Palestinian homes have been destroyed or damaged.
Several MPs, in an emergency parliamentary session on Saturday, criticised the official SudanTV channel for focusing on songs and TV series and ignoring what is going on in Gaza.
They called upon the information minister, Ahmed Bilal Osman, to direct the national media to focus on the Palestinian cause.
The Sudanese legislators also lashed at calls of some journalists for calling to normalise relations with Israel.
Last month, a group of masked gunmen stormed the headquarters of Al-Tayyar daily newspaper in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum and assaulted its editor-in-chief, Osman Mirghani.
Mirghani has recently debated in a TV talk show program the issue of normalising relations with Israel. He also wrote a column on the same issue in Al-Tayyar.
The parliament said it would mobilise Islamic people inside Sudan and abroad, calling on Sudanese people to join the demonstrations in order to protest against “massacres and killing of innocent people in [the] Gaza strip”.
It also pledged to hold demonstrations during holidays to protest in front of western and Arab embassies backing Tel Aviv.
The Sudanese MPs demanded reestablishment of the Organization for Defending Islamic faith and Nation (ODIN) which was known for holding pro-government demonstrations.
The parliament also directed Sudanese hospitals to receive the wounded and injured Palestinians, saying it would summon the foreign minister, Ali Karti, over developments of the Palestinian cause.
It directed Karti to demand the Arab League to hold an emergency session to discuss the Israeli aggression on Gaza.
The legislative body, which includes the National Assembly and the Council of States, demanded in a statement on Sunday opening of Rafah crossing between Egypt and Gaza strip, underscoring the need for putting pressures to stop the aggression and bring Israeli leaders to justice.
The speaker of the parliament, al-Fatih Izz al-Din, said they asked the Egyptian government during the meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Tehran to open Rafah crossing in order to provide humanitarian aid to the people in Gaza.
He described preventing entry of food and medicines to Gaza as “complicity in the crime”.
The speaker further criticized what he called “deep sleep” of the Arabs towards the Palestinian cause, saying the European condemnation for the Israeli aggression surpassed that of the Islamic world.
Izz al-din called upon the Sudanese Lawyers Union (SLU) to bring legal action against Israel as a state committing war crimes and genocide, stressing the need for a unified Arab and Islamic stance to repel the “Zionist aggression”.