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Khartoum court to resume trial of student charged with murder

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Anti-riot policemen outside the Khartoum University after a student protest on 7 November 2016 (ST Photo)
December 12, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Trial of a college student charged with murder for allegedly killing a police officer during protests at Khartoum University (UofK) in April is scheduled to resume on Wednesday in Khartoum.

Asim Omer Khalifa, who faces charges under article 130 “premeditated murder” of the Criminal Code, is a member of the student chapter of the opposition Sudanese Congress Party (SCoP).

The court of appeals has returned the case file to the Khartoum North criminal court after considering an application for examination by the General Prosecutor’s Office against the court’s decision to deny appearance of one of the prosecutors before the court and removal of his name from the prosecutors list.

It is noteworthy that the Judge at Khartoum North criminal court last September has prevented some members of the prosecution and defence teams from appearing before the court after they had engaged in sharp verbal altercation inside the courtroom.

In a statement extended to Sudan Tribune on Monday, SCoP said the accused student didn’t enjoy the rights stipulated by the Criminal Code throughout the period of his arrest.

“He [the accused] has neither been notified of the charges against him nor has he received a copy of them to exercise his right to appeal. Also, the prosecution repeatedly denied requests from his defense team to meet him, and these are rights guaranteed by the laws and Sudan’s 2005 interim constitution,” read the statement.

It added the trial would resume after the accused has spent eight months behind bars, pointing the delayed justice is injustice even if the court acquits the accused.

“We have followed with complete satisfaction the Khartoum North court proceedings which showed clear desire for a fair and speedy trial, however, we are concerned about the delay at the court of appeals and we are confident that no matter how long it takes, the dawn of truth will shine at the end of the long tunnel of injustice” added the statement.

In April, massive demonstrations erupted at the (UofK) following press statements made by some officials about government intentions to transfer the university from its current location and to lease out its premises for investment purposes.

Dozens of students were arrested and others wounded in the protests when the police intervened with tear gas and rubber bullets.

(ST)

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