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Michael Carmichael

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Nagi Musa and the Sudan Ten

Posted: 01/31/2012 2:15 pm

The Sudanese National Security Forces have arrested Nagi Musa and nine other leaders of Girifna, the nonviolent people's resistance movement in Eastern Sudan.

On Wednesday the 25th of January, Nagi Musa was leading a conference titled: "The Massacre in Port Sudan and the Crisis in East Sudan." Nagi Musa's conference commemorated the seventh anniversary of the massacre.

Conference participants discussed human rights and the political situation in Sudan. The primary focus of the group centered on the Massacre in Port Sudan when 22 Beja people were executed on the spot by Sudanese National Forces in a massive outbreak of ultra-violent police brutality. In the melee, 400 other Bejas were severely injured.

The massacre occured while the Bejas were participating in a nonviolent protest in Port Sudan. The Bejas were demanding: peace, democracy, economic development and the end of racial persecution. In the course of the peaceful demonstration, heavily armed Sudanese police forces opened fire killing, maiming and wounding hundreds of unarmed Bejas, who have long been the objects of repeated attempts at ethnic cleansing as well as genocidal acts of racial violence.

Under domestic and international pressure from human rights organizations, the government agreed to set up a commission to investigate the Port Sudan atrocity. However, the commission has operated in total secrecy refusing to publish their findings for seven years.

The Bejas and human rights campaigners accuse the Sudanese Ministry of the Interior, the Commissioner of Police and the Chief of Police of Port Sudan with the perpetration of crimes against humanity, war crimes, genocide and a broad spectrum of violent atrocities.

Mounting public outrage following the arrest and isolated detention of Nagi Musa and his associates are leading to demands for the release of all prisoners now held by the Sudanese National Security Forces.

Those arrested along with Nagi Musa include: Amar Dirar, Gazi Altayeb, Mohamad Mahjoub and Shareef Kamal. All are members of Girifna. Two youth leaders who attended the event have been declared missing since Wednesday night. Their families have released information to Girifna concerning the disappearance of the two prominent youth: Omar Ahmad Hamid, a senior student at Khartoum University and Mohamed Omer Al Amin, a recent graduate of the College of Law at Nillen University.

Several Sudanese citizens engaged in the human rights conference and Girifna have complained of intrusive police surveillance. Fearing arrest, torture and possible summary executions, several people have gone into seclusion.

On the 28th of January, Sudanese National Security Forces arrested four leaders of the non-violent pro-democracy movement organization, Sharara: Youth for Change. At a regular meeting of Sharara, Sudanese police took four human rights activists into custody. Khalef Saeed, a human rights campaigner based in the United Arab Emirates who was visiting Sudan to consult with Sharara was arrested along with three more organizers of the nonviolent Sharara movement: Magdi Akasa; Hatim Shinab and Yasin.

Further information about the recent spate of arrests and detentions is scarce, but eyewitness accounts do include descriptions of police brutality and torture.

Western observers working for non-governmental organizations are asking for international protection and humanitarian intervention to preserve and defend the nonviolent movement now emerging in Sudan.

A total of ten human rights leaders now in isolation at the infamous Kober Prison in Khartoum comprise the Sudan Ten.

 

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