Home | Press Releases    Saturday 7 August 2004

Government forces arrest the DarFur Call activists

SHRO-CAIRO

Urgent Press Release
AUGUST 7, 2004

KHARTOUM (August 4-7): the Sudan Government security forces launched arbitrary arrests, torturous interrogation, and unlawful detention to the Nida’ DarFur [The DarFur Call] national group which is a non-governmental nationalist body most recently established by opposition parties, professional associations, and other civil society organizations to mobilize the public with peaceful means to provide speedy humanitarian relief to the war-affected people of DarFur.

Among other detained members, the following leaders have been arbitrarily arrested and unlawfully detained:

- Hassan ’Abd al-Gadir Hilal, Democratic Unionist Party

- Yousif Hussain, Communist Party

- Ibrahim al-Sheikh, Congress Party

- Sati’ Mohamed al-Haj, Nasserist Unionist Party

- Younis Siddig Younis, ’Abd al-Mageed Cultural Center

The DarFur Call arrested activists have earlier obtained legal permit from the Ministry of Interior to hold a public meeting in Khartoum to support the ongoing national and international efforts to ease the escalated crisis of DarFur.

The ministry’s permit was signed on August the 3rd by the Police Colonel Hussain Nafi’ Mahmoud, director of the minister’s office. The DarFur Call was cordially welcomed by the Governor of DarFur and other concerned groups. Before a meeting already announced to discuss the DarFur Call Humanitarian Program for the People of DarFur was assembled, the government security forces raided the place, violently arresting many participants and detaining them in unknown interrogation centers without charge.

The Sudan Human Rights Organization Cairo Office condemns in the strongest terms possible the unlawful attitude of the Sudan Security Forces against the DarFur Call peaceful group. The Organization equally holds the minister of interior and the other senior officials of the Sudan Security bodies responsible for the frustrating effects of this ruthless attack on a national humanitarian group.

SHRO-Cairo asks the government to:

- - Immediately release the arrested activists;

- - Allow immediate proceedings of the DarFur Call as planned by the detained activists;

- - Conduct immediate, firm, and independent Judicial and Administrative Investigation on the security attack of the DarFur Call activists;

- - Publish the findings with further actions to deal with the transgressing security officials by law.

The Organization regrettably notes that the Sudan Government’s insistence to persecute civil society and opposition groups seriously inhibits the national efforts to resolve the DartFur’s Crisis. The government’s persecution of the civil society efforts to support the victims of DarFur posits a serious threat to the country’s national security.

The government must fulfill all its national and international obligations without hesitation or failure.

SHRO-Cairo strongly urges the government to:

- - Stop all anti-democratic laws, repressive measures, or transgressing acts against the Sudanese popular movement that seriously aims to provide humanitarian support as well as peaceful settlement of the Conflict;

- - Cooperate in good faith with the People of Sudan to resolve the state-escalated Crisis; and

- - Speed up the National Constitutional Conference with the Sudan’s opposition and civil society groups for a lasting, peaceful, and workable settlement.