Sudan: Student activist detained
On 28 March, student activist Haidar Mahmoud Abderrahman Manis was arrested by security forces in Khartoum North, Sudan. He is being detained in an unknown location, and has no access to his family or a lawyer. He is at risk of torture or other ill-treatment.
Haidar Mahmoud Abderrahman Manis was arrested in the Setta Haj Youssef market in Khartoum North, on the outskirts of Sudan's capital Khartoum. According to a witness, he was at the market with a friend when four men in civilian clothing arrested him and took him away in a car believed to belong to the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS). His family has not been told of his whereabouts or well-being, and he has not had access to a lawyer. He had allegedly given speeches on a number of campuses in recent days on the situation in Darfur, Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile. He is in danger of torture and other forms of severe treatment.
Haidar Mahmoud Abderrahman Manis is from the town of El Fashir, in North Darfur. He is an activist within the Darfur University Students' Association. He may have been detained solely for peacefully expressing his political opinions, in which case he is a prisoner of conscience and should be immediately and unconditionally released.
PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY.
* Insist that the authorities release Haidar Mahmoud Abderrahman Manis immediately and unconditionally, if he is being held solely due to his peaceful expression of his political opinions. Otherwise they must charge him with a recognizably criminal offence and ensure he is tried promptly in proceedings that meet international standards.
* Urge them to ensure that Haidar Mahmoud Abderrahman Manis is not subjected to torture or otherwise ill treated.
* Ask them to reveal the whereabouts of Haidar Mahmoud Abderrahman Manis and grant him immediate access to his lawyer, family and any medical treatment he may require.
* Call on the Sudanese government to immediately stop the harassment and intimidation of activists in Sudan and to respect their right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.
HERE IS THE CONTACT INFORMATION YOU NEED:
Minister of Justice:
Mohammed Bushara Dousa
Ministry of Justice
PO Box 302, Al Nil Avenue
Fax: 011 249 183 764 168
Salutation: Your Excellency
Minister of Interior:
Ibrahim Mohamed Hamed
Ministry of Interior
PO Box 873
Salutation: Your Excellency
AND COPIES TO:
Mr Musa Abdelrahim Mohamed Adam
Chargé d'Affaires, Embassy of Sudan
354 Stewart Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6K8
Fax: (613) 235-6880
His Excellency Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir
Office of the President
People's Palace PO Box 281
Fax: 011 249 183 770 621
Inspired by protests throughout the Middle East and North Africa which began in Tunisia at the beginning of January 2011, hundreds of demonstrators throughout Sudan have taken to the streets calling for democracy and an improvement to their socio-economic conditions. The police and the NISS in Sudan responded by frequently arresting and ill-treating peaceful demonstrators. Student movements and organizations are regularly targeted by the NISS.
The crackdown on freedom of expression in Sudan continues as the authorities attempt to silence dissent and limit access to information. Since early 2011 there have been increased restrictions on freedom of expression imposed by the NISS, which has resulted in the ongoing harassment and intimidation of individuals who speak out against the government.
The NISS maintain broad powers of arrest and detention under the 2010 National Security Act, which allows suspects to be detained for up to four and a half month without judicial review. National security officials often use these powers to arbitrarily arrest and detain individuals, and to subject them to torture and other forms of ill-treatment. Under the same Act, NISS agents are provided with protection from prosecution for any act committed in the course of their work, which has resulted in a pervasive culture of impunity.
Amnesty International has documented numerous cases of arbitrary arrest, detention, and torture or other ill-treatment by the NISS
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