Sudan security officers question Nuba activist about contacts with ‘enemies’

Dibebad, Delling, and Kadugli in the Nuba Mountains (OCHA map of South Kordofan)

Agents of the General Intelligence Service (GIS) briefly detained activist Hayat Osman in Delling, South Kordofan, on Thursday, after she met with a leader of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North led by Abdelaziz El Hilu [SPLM-N El Hilu] in the region.

Osman was held in GIS* offices in the town, questioned about her activities, and released on the same day, a source told Radio Dabanga yesterday.

“A force of security officers arrived at Hayat’s home and took her to their offices, where they questioned her about her participation in a discussion in Delling last week about the establishment of a women humanitarian organisation,” she said.

“But the officers were in particular interested in her meeting, together with other women activists, with a leader of the SPLM-N.”

The source explained that this meeting was part of the initiative of the Nuba women group to arrange for the safe passage of humanitarian aid from Delling to Kadugli, the capital of South Kordofan.

The group is also communicating with the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) command in El Debibad to allow the passage of aid via the El Obeid-Debibad-Delling road.

The SPLM-N El Hilu is based in Kauda in South Kordofan and also active in parts of Blue Nile region and West Kordofan. After the war between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the RSF broke out in April last year, the rebel group clashed with army troops in Kadugli and Delling and also with the RSF in Dibebad in June, and again with the SAF in Delling in October.

Clashes between the SPLM-N, SAF and RSF in the northwestern part of the Nuba Mountains resumed in January. The army kept control of Delling, while the RSF kept its control of the area of Debibad.

* On May 8, junta leader Abdelfattah El Burhan issued a “constitutional decree” that approved the amended National Security Act governing the work of the General Intelligence Service (GIS). The amended law broadened the powers of the GIS, which according to lawyers are contrary to its mission stipulated in the 2019 Constitutional Document. The amended act grants Military Intelligence and GIS free powers of detention, like its predecessor, the infamous National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS), had until it was disbanded in July 2019. During the reign of dictator Omar al Bashir (1989-2019), the NISS acted ruthlessly against any political dissent.