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Sudan’s prosecutor appeals to reinstate death sentence against Noura Hussein

August 16, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese prosecutor submitted an appeal against a five-year sentence and a fine and requested the constitutional court to reinstate a death penalty for Noura Hussein a 19-year old girl murdered her husband after a forced marriage.

Last May, a court had sentenced Hussein to death by hanging, as she had been convicted for the premeditated murder of her husband, Abdel Rahman Mohamed Hammad. However in June after a campaign inside and outside Sudan, an appeal court sentenced her to five years in jail and a fine of 337500 Sudanese SDG.

"The state prosecutor on Noura Hussein’s case has appealed to have her current sentence (....) overturned, and has filed a petition for the death penalty to be reinstated," said a statement extended to Sudan Tribune by an international women’s rights organization Equality Now.

The move comes after the rejection of fine by Hammad’s family, attack on the house of Hussein’s family and public threats that they would kill a member of her family to revenge their son if the court maintains its refusal to hung Noura.

However, rights groups and lawyers appealed to the Supreme Court, seeking unconditional freedom for Noura arguing that it was a self-defence case and she is a victim of forced marriage and marital rape.

But Equality Now said Noura’s legal appeal was withdrawn "under suspicious circumstances" on 8 August, pointing that a notice to withdraw the appeal had been filed by a lawyer who is not on record for Noura’s case several days before.

"On 5th August Noura was summoned before the vice director of the court where she confirmed the withdrawal," the statement further stressed.

Noura family said they are under pressure from Hammad’s family which threatened them asking the father to not visit his daughter who is in Omdurman prison for women.

The two families are members of Darfur’s Zaghawa tribe, but the Hammads refuse to pardon Noura saying she premeditated to kill their son to marry another cousin, a claim that her family denies.

Women and rights groups say Noura’s case revealed the deficit on the Sudanese laws on the protection of women victims of violence and they seek a legal reform in this respect.

(ST)