Civil society to Germany: ‘Sudan continues atrocities’

In a letter to the German government, which is meeting Sudan opposition groups in Berlin, sixteen civil society members claim that Khartoum continues its crimes against civilians.

Sudanese civil society organisations wrote in a letter to the German government that the lack of condemnation of crimes committed by Khartoum is encouraging the government to continue such atrocities. Germany currently hosts a conference with Sudanese opposition groups and civil society organisations.

Sixteen signatories, including the Darfur Bar Association, the Darfur Forum, the Darfur Women Network, and the Alliance of Darfur Students, claim that Sudan disrespects international obligations and local agreements. The international community fails to hold the government accountable for this.

“This is why the respect of the Sudanese population for the role of the international community is diminishing and the government is encouraged to continue its policies and violations,” the letter, released on Wednesday, reads.

“This is why the respect of the Sudanese population for the role of the international community is diminishing.”

They point to the the lack of condemnation of, for example, the mass rape in Tabit in North Darfur on 31 October 2014. Germany, among others, requested an independent investigation into the allegations. “After a detailed report was published by Human Rights Watch in February [2015] the countries remained silent.”

Opposition meeting

In Berlin, the Sudanese opposition groups participating in the conference agreed that a conducive political environment is required in order for a comprehensive dialogue initiative to succeed.

The signatories of the Sudan Appeal and the rebel movements allied in the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF), have welcomed the National Dialogue initiative in Sudan, with the goal of solving the crises in the country. But in order to do so, political detainees must be released, the bombing of civilians must be stopped, and humanitarian assistance must be allowed into the conflict zones.

This statement was made during a meeting between a delegation of the opposition groups and the Foreign Ministry of Germany. They include the SRF chairman, Malik Agar, and the leader of the National Umma Party, El Sadig El Mahdi, both signatories to the two-month-old Sudan Appeal that calls for regime change. The secretary-general of the Sudanese Communist Party, Mukhtar El Khateeb, and Dr Babiker Mohamed El Hassan, the representative of the civil society organisations, also attended the meeting.

The participants further discussed the dialogue forum in Ethiopia that will take place under the auspices of the African Union.