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Sudan security service prevents critical play

June 1 - 2018 PORT SUDAN
A Sudanese theatre play (file photo)
A Sudanese theatre play (file photo)

The security apparatus in Port Sudan has prevented a play of Sawrat El Kilat, which was scheduled to be presented at a local theatre this evening.

The director of the play, Amin Sinada, told Radio Dabanga that he received a call on Thursday from the management of the Union of Writers and Artists in Red Sea state to notify him that his play has been prevented to take place in the union’s theatre.

“This play is written by Rabee Yousef, to be performed by the band of El Samandal. It displays the issues of rights and citizenship, and aims to provide the audience awareness about human rights.”

El Samandal band also regrets the decision by the security service. Band leader Mohamed Ahmed El Zaki said he is concerned about the prevention.

“The band had made a great technical effort in the preparation for the play. The authorities are known to restrict creative works in Port Sudan.”

El Zaki pointed to the closure of the Eastern Bir Youth Centre in Abu Hashish during celebrations of the memory of singer Mustafa Sid Ahmed, and to the intervention in the tenth Festival of El Samandal which would commemorate martyr Mahmoud Mohamed Taha.

In January 2015, the Ministry of Culture also cancelled the registration of the Mahmoud Mohamed Taha Centre in Omdurman, the National Civil Forum, and the Sudanese Writers’ Union, without citing reasons or relevant legislation. The Writers’ Union was allowed to reopen in December last year.

Prevention of public gatherings

The Sudanese security service (NISS) has been known to prevent public gatherings that discuss topics critical of the regime or Sudan. On January 17, security agents pre-emptively flooded the El Ahliya schoolyard and covered it with sewage water in an attempt to prevent a vigil. Members of the security service detained activists who publicly announced a symposium that was scheduled for May 11


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