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Sudan’s investigation committee seeks credible evidence


May 25, 2021 (KHARTOUM) - The head of the investigation committee into a bloody attack by on pro-democracy sit-in said they are still seeking irrefutable evidence that enables them to indict those responsible for organising the killing of peaceful protesters.

Nabil Adeeb (ST photo)On September 21, 2019, Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok established a committee to investigate the killing of over 200 peaceful protesters by the security forces on 3 June 2021. Also, he appointed Nabil Adeeb as the head of the investigation team. The independent lawyer is known for his integrity and support for democracy in Sudan during the 30 years of the repressive Islamist regime.

The committee was tasked with identifying the responsible for the violence against the sit-inners implemented by a joint force from the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and members of the former National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS). It had a 3-month-period to submit its findings.

The slow pace of the investigation led the Families of the Martyrs, an organisation gathering the relatives of the victims, to organise a big rally in Khartoum on 11 May requesting the trial of the responsible for the attack.

At the end of the rally, they read a statement accusing the Deputy Head of the Sovereign Council and RSF Commander Mohamed Hamdan Dalgo Hemetti of the attack.

Following the killing of two protesters by the security forces on 11 May, Hamdok announced that he would summon Adeeb to discuss the investigation and determine a time limit for his committee to file its findings. The meeting took place on 22 May.

Reached by the Sudan Tribune on Tuesday, the lawyer confessed that the dispersal of the sit-in is a "complex crime" that had been prepared and implemented from behind the scenes.

"There are video clips showing members of the security forces opening fire (on the sit-inners) but the videos do not show who directed the operation and who was supposed to prevent (the killing). We have some parts of evidence and we search for the missing piece of the (puzzle)," he said

Adeeb confirmed that the Committee investigated all the members of the dissolved Transitional Military Council (TMC).

However, "there are people who we believe have information of interest to the committee. They will be investigated next week. They are civilians and militaries," he added.

The dissolved TMC included the head of the Sovereign Council, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, Hemetti, and two other members of the Sovereign Council, Yasir Alatta and Chems al-Din Khabbashi.

Adeeb stressed that the commission has evidence that "can be presented to the court, but if it is not supported then there is a risk that the prosecution case will not be proven properly."

"We are in the stage of consolidating this evidence. I am not sure that this evidence is sufficient. It must be supported," he emphasized.

Activists accuse Hemetti’s brother Abdel Rahim Daglo of directing the attack together with some Islamists officers who had been placed in the RSF command by the former regime.

Meeting with Hamdok

Speaking about his meeting with Hamdok, Adeeb said they discussed how to overcome the difficulties his committee is facing, the most important of which is the technical assistance.

He said the committee needs some technical support to verify the authenticity of the videos most of it posted by activities on social media. He needs the government to bring him a foreign firm or experts to verify these documents.

"If the needed "technical" support is provided, a date could be determined for the end of the committee’s work," Nabil said.

Adeeb further said that the government did not provide adequate protection and assistance to the committee. Also, he described its premises as "unsuitable."

The 5-member investigation body has only 3 employees provided by the government.

On his statement of 11 May, the prime minister said he would urge the investigation committee to expedite its work and determine a date for its report on the bloody attack.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the families of the martyrs reiterated the accusation for the military council saying they bear the responsibility for all the attacks on pro-democracy protesters committed since the 11th April 2019.

"Our accusation against Mohamed Hamdan (Hemetti), his brother Abdul Rahim, and the Rapid Support militia has been based on evidence, and eyewitnesses," reads the statement.


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