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Former prisoner tells of torture of politicians, rebels in Sudan

December 27 - 2016 KHARTOUM
A prison cell (ACJPS.org)
A prison cell (ACJPS.org)

Detained opposition members and humanitarian aid workers in Sudanese prisons are subjected to torture, according to a former prisoner. In particular captured members of rebel movements are exposed to torture.

After two months and two days in Kober and Dabrak prisons, the detained Badreldin El Haj and Elsir El Gazouli were released on Monday. They had carried out a protest against the government's decision that authorities may forcefully seize their lands and sell them to investors.

Speaking to Radio Dabanga the next day, El Haj reported that there are more than 350 detainees in Kober. “They are members of the armed movements, political leaders of the opposition and humanitarian organisation workers.

“Detainees are regularly tortured and threatened with death by members of the security apparatus.” El Haj himself has been threatened once by a security agent. “His name was Bakri. He threatened to lock me in the water cell for a full week.”

He appealed to human rights organisations in and outside Sudan to save the lives of the detainees in the prisons.

SCP members in detention

Nine leaders and members of the Sudanese Congress Party (SCP) remain in detention. Deputy president Khalid Omer was released yesterday night. SCP president Omar El Digeir described his arrest as a “proof of the incredibility of the National Dialogue outputs”.

El Digeir was released later on Sunday, after sixteen SCP members were let go. “My detention, together with other leaders and a cadre of the party, happened because of our participation in the street movements.”

The party leader told Radio Dabanga he was detained on November 9, moved to Kober prison, and then to Port Sudan where he spent 44 days. “I have not been subjected to any investigation during the period of his detention. I believe that it was a reaction against the rise of prices and the possible reaction of people.”

Relatives are concerned about the detained opposition members

The families of the political detainees organised a vigil in front of the headquarters of the director of the national security service in the capital on Monday. They condemn the detentions and the fact that they have not been charged.

The relatives said they are “deeply concerned” over the continued detention without charge or even allowing them to have visitors in the prison, in a news conference at the headquarters of the SCP.

More detentions

The security apparatus continues the detention of five leaders of the National Consensus Forces in an unknown location. Initially they were summoned daily to report to the office of the security service, but have been fully detained since 23 November.

Four members of the coalition of the Future Forces have been released, however, as well as Communist Party member Masood Hassan and Hisham El Fadilabi and Hashim El Tayeb, members of the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party.


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