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Sudan police demolish dozens of homes in Khartoum

August 14 - 2016 KHARTOUM
Sara Nugdallah, Secretary-General of the Umma Party visits El Shajara in Khartoum, 12 August 2016 (NUP)
Sara Nugdallah, Secretary-General of the Umma Party visits El Shajara in Khartoum, 12 August 2016 (NUP)

On Thursday, a police contingent demolished 67 homes in El Shajara district in the Sudanese capital without prior notice to the inhabitants.

“The police arrived with bulldozers at El Shajara El Sina'at in the morning. Under the supervision of a prosecutor, they began to demolish the homes without any prior notice. They even did not give the 76 families living in the houses a chance to take their belongings out,” Sara Nugdallah, Secretary-General of the National Umma Party and spokesman for the party, told Radio Dabanga.

She said that reasons for the demolition have not been given so far.

The 76 families are now living in the open in the area. Nugdallahcalled the incident a humanitarian disaster. “The policemen that carried out the order beat the residents when they refused to leave. They forcibly removed them from their houses, and forced them into their vans. They did not even give the women the chance to cover themselves with their tobs.

“Is there a country in the world that forcibly removes people from their homes in this way? Not even offer tents where the victims can safely store their belongings?,” she asked.

The opposition leader called on “all Sudanese to stand by the victims in El Shajara El Sina'at”, and urged “legal experts to immediately visit the area, and file a case against the Government of Sudan, demanding alternative housing and compensation for their lost property”.

The sale of land plots in Khartoum often sparked protests by residents who claim that the land is publicly or privately owned. In June 2014, hundreds of people in the districts of Rumaila and Alamab in southern Khartoum took to the streets to protest against the sale of plots of public land in their areas. Police and security forces beat residents in southeast Khartoum when they refused the removal of their houses in November 2014.

Hundreds of residents went out on the streets last May to demonstrate against the removal of historic brick factories and the removal of their houses. They burned tires and blocked the main road. The police used large amounts of teargas to draw back the protesters. A woman died due to suffocation by the teargas.

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