Annual Report: Sudan 2013

May 23, 2013

Annual Report: Sudan 2013

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The NSS carried out a wave of arrests across civil society in reaction to the demonstrations, detaining hundreds of individuals, including protesters, but also lawyers, NGO staff, doctors, and members of youth organizations and political parties – regardless of their involvement in the protests. Many were detained without charge, or were tried summarily for rioting or disrupting public order and sentenced to fines or lashes. Others were held for up to two months and indicted on more serious charges – mostly terrorism – but not sentenced.

The NSS tortured or otherwise ill-treated many of those detained following the June demonstrations. NSS agents slapped, punched and kicked prisoners, and beat them with rubber hoses. Detainees were made to stand outside for hours in scorching heat, and to adopt stress positions. Many were denied food or water and access to basic hygiene facilities.

  • On 31 July, at least 10 people, predominantly high-school students, were killed when security services and paramilitary police opened fire during a demonstration against fuel prices and the cost of living in Nyala, Darfur.
  • On 6 and 7 December, four Darfuri students from Al Jazeera University in Wad Madani were found dead in a canal near the university. The four had been arrested by NSS officers following protests at the university. The bodies reportedly bore signs of beatings, suggesting torture or ill-treatment.

The Government of Sudan continued its harassment of members of opposition groups. In October and November, over 100 people suspected of being affiliated with the SPLM-N were arrested in or around Kadugli and Dilling in Southern Kordofan.

Death penalty

Death sentences continued to be handed down. At least two women were sentenced to death by stoning. In both cases, the women were deprived of legal representation, a clear violation of the right to a fair trial.

Death sentences were often passed after trials that blatantly violated the rights of the defence. The authorities continued to use delaying tactics to undermine the rights of defendants to appeal.

  • In May and July, two women, 23-year-old Layla Ibrahim Issa Jumul and 20-year-old Intisar Sharif Abdallah, were sentenced to death by stoning for adultery. In both cases, they were convicted solely on the basis of their confession, which was obtained under duress. Both women were released on appeal.
  • Al-Tom Hamed Tutu, a JEM leader, remained on death row facing imminent threat of execution. He had been sentenced to death in 2011 after a flawed trial.

Armed conflict – Darfur

Grave human rights abuses continued throughout Darfur amid continued fighting between the government and armed opposition groups, and a breakdown of government control over government-affiliated militias. Attacks on civilians by pro-government militias, aerial bombings, and looting and destruction of property were widespread. The SAF continued to conduct aerial bombings in contravention of the UN ban on military flights in Darfur. Between July and November, the joint UN/AU Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) estimated that approximately 29,020 people were displaced by fighting. UNAMID reported that it continued to face hurdles in conducting its work due to restrictions by the government on the movement of, and delays in approval for, humanitarian assistance.

  • The village of Hashaba North and its surroundings were attacked by armed men between 26 September and 2 October. Over 250 casualties were reported.
  • On 2 October, four UNAMID peacekeepers were killed and eight wounded in an ambush in West Darfur near their base in El-Geneina.
  • On 17 October, an armed militia group attacked a UNAMID convoy on its way to Hashaba North to investigate reports of human rights atrocities being committed in the region. One UNAMID peacekeeper was killed and three others were wounded.
  • On the night of 31 December, aerial bombardments were reported in eastern Jebel Marra, killing five civilians and wounding two others in the village of Angero Rouka.

Rape and sexual violence by government-affiliated militia and government forces continued. There were numerous reports of armed men entering camps for internally displaced people at night to loot property and rape women and girls.