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'Female journalist beaten in NISS detention'

November 5 - 2012 KHARTOUM

The family of Sudanese journalist Somaya Ismail Ibrahim Handoussa has started procedures for a criminal investigation of several employees of the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS), sources informed Radio Dabanga on Sunday November 4.

The journalist’s parents stated they started the procedures after finding their daughter on Friday morning, “dumped in the outskirts of Khartoum north (Bahri) with a shaved head, clearly showing signs of torture, psychological and physical exhaustion.”

Somaya, who worked for several Sudanese newspapers including al-Sahafa, currently resides in Egypt and was visiting her family in Sudan for Eid al-Adha.

She reportedly disappeared from her family home in the evening of October 29. According to a source close to the journalist’s family, she was arrested near her home by seven NISS officers and was taken to one of the ‘ghost houses’ of the security apparatus.

The source added that they brought her a number of her articles and writings, accusing her of ‘opposing the regime and insulting President Bashir’.

Shaved head

Somaya, mother of a three year old son, descendent of the Rizeigat tribe, was “beaten and tortured with whips and hands”, the source said.

He continued that “the officers directed racist insults at her and her tribe”, adding that “they shaved her head completely, under the pretext that her hair looks like the hair of Arabs, while she belongs to a group of slaves in Darfur”, the source added to Radio Dabanga.

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