Detentions of opposition activists continue in Sudan

Friday 17/04/2015
Continued detentions without charges

KHARTOUM - Sudan's National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) has detained an opposition activist who campaigned on behalf of a colleague who was taken into custody during last week's elections, his party said Tuesday.

"Jalal Mustafa, a party leader, is still in custody after he was taken yesterday (Monday) from the home of Sandra Kaduda," Sudanese Congress Party Secretary General Abdel Gayoum Awad said.

NISS agents were responsible for Mustafa's detention, the Sudanese Congress said late Monday.

Mustafa, who is also a member of the Committee for Solidarity with the Detainees, was visiting the family home of Kaduda, another activist, in Khartoum Monday afternoon.

Kaduda was seized by a group of men on her way to an opposition rally on April 12, the day before nationwide elections began. She was released three days later, apparently with signs of ill-treatment on her body, Amnesty International said.

NISS denied knowledge of her whereabouts but her family said its agents had detained her as she travelled to the anti-elections protest.

Four other party members were detained by security forces during the past week, Awad said, and have been referred to the state security prosecutor.

The prosecutor is seeking to charge them with trying to "overthrowing the constitutional order," which can incur the death penalty, Awad said.

On Saturday, NISS agents seized the entire print run of independent daily Al-Youm al-Tali, telling its editor the reason was an article published about Kaduda the previous day.

Rights groups accused the government of stifling media and civil society before the elections.

President Omar al-Bashir -- wanted for war crimes in the western region of Darfur -- is widely expected to win the elections, despite low turnout and an opposition boycott.

The results are due to be announced Monday.