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Missing persons committee accuses Sudan’s Attorney General of protecting corrupt doctors

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25 July 2021 (KHARTOUM ) - The Committee on Enforced Disappearances in Sudan has questioned the credibility of the doctors tasked with dissecting hundreds of bodies in the morgues in Khartoum, and charged the Interim Attorney General with protecting corruption within the Forensic Medicine Authority.

bodies of some people killed by the RSF militiamen on the sit-in area at a hospital in Khartoum on 3 June 2019 (ST photo)On Saturday, the Public Prosecution said the Attorney General ordered to bury 70 of hundreds of bodies in Khartoum morgues stressing that these corpses were not related to any criminal investigations or missing persons.

"We question the credibility of the reports made by the doctors assigned to perform autopsies in mortuaries, and we do not trust them," a member of the committee on missing persons, Somaya Osman, told Sudan Tribune on Sunday.

Osman further dismissed a statement issued by the Prosecution Office, attributing the accumulation of bodies in the morgues to a decision by the Committee on Missing Persons to stop the autopsy and burial of the bodies in the morgues.

"The committee did not prevent the burial, it only stipulated that the examination of the body of a dead person be done after fulfilling the standards set by the International Red Cross"

The Sudanese official was referring to the need to perform DNA analysis, to identify missing people.

Before the advent of DNA analysis, forensic haemogenetics had been used for human identification, but the scope of such analysis was limited.

She attributed the accumulation of corpses in mortuaries to "the (logistical) problems within forensic medicine," before accusing the interim Attorney General of "protecting corruption within the forensic medicine institution."

"Bodies were randomly entered into the morgues and buried without an autopsy, and the committee on missing persons has established this fact," she emphasized.

Last year, the directors of Khartoum and Omdurman forensic services had been relieved from their position as they were suspected of issuing false death certificates for protesters killed by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in June 2019.

The Interim General Attorney who was appointed last May by the deputy head of the Sovereign Council and commander of the RSF militiamen is accused of issuing burial orders for corpses suspected to be of people killed in the bloody raid on the pro-democracy sit-in in June 2019.

These accusations were reinforced after the director of his office on July 12 prevented an international investigation group on missing people hired by the government from examining bodies in a morgue in Khartoum, despite notification by the Committee on Missing Persons of the visit.

(ST)

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