Source: Sudan Women and Youth Action (SWYA)
May 16, 2016
Fears and concerns of women students detained for exercising their civic and
political rights in Sudan
The situation of the women students detained in unknown location since the 5th of May 2016 of great concern to women rights activists and organizations in Sudan.
Two of the women namely Mai Adil Ibrahim Karar, Faculty of Engineering and Wifag
Mohamed Altayeeb Gorashi, Faculty of Art, were arrested from a human rights lawyer office by an armed group from the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS). They were meeting the lawyer with other students to discuss their unfair dismissal from the University of Khartoum following their peaceful demonstration after news on selling the university premises and the decision to reallocate different faculties was spread. Another student Safaa Mudawi, Faculty of Geography and Environmental Science who was arrested with her mother after members of the NISS raided their home.
The Government of Sudan (GoS) has become more intolerant and repressive toward youth movements and women activists. The NISS increased impunity is clearly noted in the excessive force that is used against civilians. In many past events member of progovernment groups and the NISS were documented shooting and severely injuring peaceful students’ protesters. Moreover, as Human Rights Watch last report on the status of Women Human Rights Defenders in Sudan, “Good Girls Do Not Protest”, illustrates the security forces have used different form of sexual violence against women activists as a form of intimidation to prevent them from speaking up and demanding their rights.
While Swya cannot give details of the situation of detained women, we are concerned that the human rights of these women are being abused and they are going through different forms of torture and ill-treatment, particularly, they are in a great risk of being sexually abused. We urgently call for their immediate release and to facilitate their access to their lawyers and family members.
Similarly, other students were arrested from the lawyer’s office and they are still in custody of the NISS. Some of them are accused of murder and hence their lives are in danger.
As an initiative working on promoting and advocating for women and youth rights in Sudan, with a special focus on sexual violence against women human rights defenders, we urge institutions and the international community to condemn the attack on students and to put pressure on the GoS to release all the people arbitrarily detained in a clear violation of their fundamental human rights.