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Families of political detainees plead with Sudanese presidency to secure their release

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February 24, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - Families of the detained Sudanese opposition leaders and political activists have demanded President Omer al-Bashir to intervene to secure their release.

Dozens of the relatives of the detainees have gathered on Saturday at the opposition National Umma Party (NUP) headquarters carrying pictures and banners denouncing detention of their sons.

In a statement seen by Sudan Tribune, families of the detainees demanded the Sudanese presidency to intervene, saying it is the body responsible for protecting the constitution and monitoring performance of the security services.

The exact number of the detainees is unknown but opposition sources said the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) have detained 411 activists during the recent protests against austerity measures.

Last week, 80 detainees have been released upon directives from the presidency.

However, the authorities kept in detention the leaders of the Sudanese Congress Party, the Sudanese Communist Party and the Unionist Alliance. NISS Director Salah Gosh said their release depends on the conduct of their parties.

The statement added hundreds of activists have been detained since the beginning of this year, saying “many of them have been transferred to prisons hundreds of kilometres away from their place of detention and permanent residence”.

It pointed out that several memos have been presented to the authorities including the NISS, the National Human Rights Commission and the National Assembly to secure their release.

Also, a group of lawyers have submitted a legal memo to the Attorney General and a legal challenge against the arrest procedures was deposited at the Constitutional Court.

The families of the detainees further rejected taking of their sons as hostages, stressing they would continue to demand their release through all legitimate means.

(ST)

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