EU-Sudan: Leading human rights activist re-arrested

As the European Union High Representative for CFSP Javier Solana holds talks today in Brussels with the Sudanese Vice President Ali Osman Mohammed Taha, Amnesty International expressed its serious concern at the arrest of Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam, a leading Sudanese human rights activist and Chair of the humanitarian organisation Sudan Social Development Organisation (SUDO).

Amnesty International is worried about the continued harassment of SUDO staff members and human rights activists in general in Sudan and calls on the EU to underline this issue during its talks with the Sudanese Vice President.

Members of Sudan’s National Security and Intelligence Agency arrested Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam and a friend Salah Mohamed Abdelrahman in his family home in Kondua, a village in North Kordofan at 11pm GMT on Sunday 24 January. No reasons were given for their arrest and no one has so far had access to the detainees. They were reportedly brought to the National Security Agency office in the town of Umburua, North Kordofan.

“The two men must be given immediate access to their relatives, lawyers and any medical assistance they may need. Incommunicado detentions have provided the context for numerous acts of torture by the Sudanese National Security Agency” said Amnesty International’s Africa program Director Kolawole Olaniyan.

Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam had already been detained previously. He was arrested on 28 December 2003 by the National Security Agency upon return from Darfur, where SUDO provides humanitarian aid to displaced civilians. He was later charged with “crimes against the state” and the evidence against him included Amnesty International public documents found in his possession. Amnesty International adopted him as a prisoner of conscience. All charges against him were dropped in August 2004.

On 10 September 2004, Adib Abdel Rahman Yusuf, the head of the SUDO office in Zalingei, West Darfur State, was arrested in the capital, Khartoum by National Security and Intelligence Agency officers. He has since been held incommunicado, without charge, at the political section of the National Security and Intelligence Agency offices in Khartoum. Amnesty International considers him a prisoner of conscience, detained solely for the peaceful pursuit of his lawful occupation.

For more information please call Amnesty International’s press office in London, UK, on +44 20 7413 5566 or Amnesty International’s EU Office in Brussels – 02-5021499.