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Trial of activists postponed again in Sudan capital

August 31 - 2016 KHARTOUM
File photo
File photo

The Judge at the Khartoum Criminal Court again postponed the court hearing on the trial of nine civil society activists affiliated with the Khartoum-based Centre for Training and Human Development (TRACKS) on Tuesday.

Power outages at the courthouse, and a request for evidence from the investigators, prompted the Judge to postpone the hearing for the second time, until 4 September.

Lawyer Nabil Adib, the head of the defence team, told Radio Dabanga that at the beginning of the hearing session, the investigating detective asked the court to provide an electronic disk (CD) and other materials said to have been collected from the activists’ computers. However, a power outage prevented this. Adib said that the defence team accepted the court's decision to postpone the hearing session.

The trial of the activists, who face charges that could carry the death penalty, which started on 24 August, was first postponed until yesterday September following a request by the chief investigator for more time to prepare.

In a statement ahead of yesterday’s hearing, the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies, Amnesty International, DefendDefenders, the International Federation for Human Rights and the International Refugee Rights Initiative called on Sudanese authorities to drop all charges against the activists and “immediately and unconditionally release three men who have been detained since May 2016 solely for the peaceful exercise of their rights”.

“The criminal charges, arrests and raids all appear aimed at intimidating TRACKs staff members and disrupting the operation of the organisation,” said Mossaad Mohamed Ali, Executive Director of the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies. “Sudan must immediately and unconditionally release the detainees, drop all charges that stem from their peaceful activities and let TRACKS staff and their affiliates conduct their work without fear of reprisals.”

Activists facing charges:

El Khozeinee Ahmed El Hadi, Temporary Accountant of the TRACKS Centre

Mustafa Adam, Director of the Zarga organisation for Rural Development, who was visiting TRACKS Centre when the raid took place

Adil Bakheet, Sudanese Human Rights Monitor

Midhat Afifeldin Hamdan, Trainer of the TRACKS Center

Nudeina Kamal

El Hassan Kheiry, IT technician of the TRACKS Center

Khalafallah A. Mukhtar, Director of the TRACKS Center

Arwa El Rabee, Administrative Director of the TRACKS Center

Imani-Leila Ray, volunteer from Cameroon

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