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New charges against Czech, Sudanese pastors

December 20 - 2016 KHARTOUM
A church in Khartoum (file photo)
A church in Khartoum (file photo)

The Sudanese security service (NISS) filed a new charge against a Czech and two Sudanese pastors, and a Christian activist, who have been detained for months, as the trial has resumed in Khartoum on Monday.

During the court session, prosecution witness and NISS officer Sayed Abdelrahman, said they detected radio broadcasting on the web and YouTube videos posted by two hostile foreign groups. He said that the Czech pastor is a member of one of these groups.

A report on one of the YouTube videos mentioned that some persons who converted to Christianity from Islam have been killed by the Sudanese government, he added.

The two Sudanese pastors did not attend the trial owing to fatigue, as they were permitted by Judge Osama Abdallah to see the doctor.

Rev. Petr Jasek from Czechia, Nuba pastors Kuwa Shemaal and Hassan Abdelrahim Kodi from South Kordofan, and activist and Abdelmunim Abdelmoula were detained by security agents in Khartoum in late 2015 and early this year. They have been charged of conspiring against the state and espionage, and a number of other violations of the Sudanese Penal Code.

Last August a Sudanese court began the trial. During the former hearing, “investigator Abdelrahman” said that the Czech pastor, during his visit to South Kordofan in 2012, gave money to “some individuals”, among them rebel fighters. This is regarded as support for the war against the state. As Rev. Jasek is cooperating with international Christian organisations, he is charged with “tarnishing Sudan’s image internationally” as well.

Other charges that were filed against the defendants are under article (29) of the Passports and Immigration Law on sneaking into the country illegally, and article (23) of the Humanitarian and Voluntary Work Act: pertaining to running a voluntary organisation without registration.

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