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Heavy security actions against new Sudan protest marches

February 15 - 2019 KHARTOUM / PORT SUDAN
A person is being detained and transferred to an unknown location by members of the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) and security agents in civilian clothes, at the Arab Market protest in Khartoum on February 7 (RD)
A person is being detained and transferred to an unknown location by members of the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) and security agents in civilian clothes, at the Arab Market protest in Khartoum on February 7 (RD)

Protests were launched yesterday in conjunction with the March for the Victims of Wars and Violence that was called for by multiple associations and groups. Khartoum, El Gezira, North Kordofan, North Darfur, and Northern State witnessed peaceful protests.

In response to a call by the Sudanese Professionals Association and other signatories to the Declaration of Freedom and Change, in Khartoum, a march was launched at El Soug El Arabi in the city centre.

At least eight other districts in Khartoum and a number of places in El Gezira, North Kordofan, North Darfur, and Northern State witnessed street protests as well.

Eyewitnesses in Khartoum told Radio Dabanga that various demonstrations started at one o'clock at El Soug El Arabi, El Gandul roundabout, Jakson Square, the Stadium and Sherouni bus station.

Security forces in vehicles used excessive violence and tear gas against the demonstrators and launched a campaign of arrests while chasing people on the streets. Arrested people were reportedly transferred to central Khartoum into the military barracks.

Security agents chased protesters into alleys and buildings

Witnesses reported that security forces chased people into alleys and buildings in El Soug El Arabi and detained dozens to hundreds of demonstrators.

Security agents in civilian clothes were heavily deployed and began a campaign of arrests near El Dahab and El Salam buildings, El Hurriya street and others. The arrests took place “in a random manner”, a listener said to Radio Dabanga, “targeting even pedestrians before and during the demonstrations, this as well as searching vehicles of people passing by”.

They evacuated a number of commercial sites such as El Salam Building, and El Imaraat and El Waha Mall.

Pre-detentions

Journalists Mohamed Ibrahim and Nureldin Jadat, covering the protest for El Tayyar newspaper, and journalist Nidal Ajeeb were also detained.

The detainees were put in Land Cruisers or Hilux vehicles at Abu Jinzeer square at El Soug El Arabi.

Also in El Gezira, North Kordofan, North Darfur and Northern state people called for and staged protests for the March for the Victims of Wars and Violence.

On Wednesday, however, security forces in Kassala state arrested teacher and human rights activist El Tahir Sharafi in anticipation of the peaceful march announced to be launched in the eastern Sudanese town the next day.

Women detainees transferred

Two women activists, Khalda Sabir and Haram Idris, have been held in Port Sudan for two weeks.

Activists told Radio Dabanga from Port Sudan that agents of the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) transferred both activists to Khartoum. The move constitutes the first of its kind, as women activists were not transferred before from Port Sudan to the capital’s detention centres.

The activists speaking to Radio Dabanga said that Sabir is a mother of two children. Idris has three children.

BBC published a video analysis yesterday about secret and widely feared holding facilities where people have been detained and tortured during the current protests. The killing of teacher Ahmed El Kheir under torture in the cells of the security apparatus formed a major theme of the current protests and demonstrations last week.

In addition people in Khartoum reported that for the first time, the security forces installed a huge tent in one of the squares on Thursday, turning it into a centre to assemble all detainees from central Khartoum.


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