Document - Sudan: Further information on Death Penalty
PUBLIC AI Index: AFR 54/017/2009
24 June 2009
Further Information on UA 108/09 (AFR 54/012/2009) Death Penalty
SUDAN 103 individuals
On 25 May, Counter-Terrorism Special Courtssentenced to death 9 men for their alleged membership to the justice and Equality Movement, a Darfur-based armed opposition group, and for their alleged participation in an attack by the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) on the capital, Khartoum. Afurther twelve people, who are also alleged members of JEM, were sentenced to death on9 June, by the same Counter-Terrorism Special Courts for the same charges.
The total number of individuals that have now been sentenced to death by theCounter-Terrorism Special Courtsis 103. All those sentenced to death were found guilty of collective crimes such as membership of a terrorist organisation and waging war against the state. All 103men have been sentenced, after unfair trials, for their alleged involvement in the military attack on the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, on 10 May 2008.
The Human Rights Special Rapporteur on Sudan has stated that the accused were held in incommunicado detention for up to 4 months before their trials and two of those who were sentenced to death were under 18 years of age at the time.
Counter-Terrorism Special Courts were established on 29 May, to try those accused of taking part in the attack on Khartoum.
The JEM's May 2008 attack on Khartoum was stopped by Sudanese forces in a matter of hours. Over the weeks that followed the attack, the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) indiscriminately arrested hundreds of civilians from the Darfur region that were living in Khartoum. In the three months following the attack, Amnesty International received reports of extrajudicial executions, hundreds of arbitrary arrests and incommunicado detentions, and widespread torture and other ill-treatment in NISS detention centres. Many of those arrested have been subjected to enforced disappearance.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send appeals to arrive as quickly as possible, in English, Arabic or your own language:
-calling on the authorities to overturn the death sentences passed on the 103 men by Anti-Terrorism Special Courts for their involvement in the May 2008, attack on Khartoum by the Justice and Equality Movement;
- expressing opposition to the death penalty, which is the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment and is a violation of the right to life;
- highlighting that the execution of child offenders is expressly prohibited by the Convention on the Rights of the Child, to which Sudan is a state party;
- emphasise that the authorities have a right and responsibility to try those who are reasonably suspected of committing crimes but that they should only do so in accordance with international standards of fair trial and without recourse to the death penalty;
Abdel Baset Saleh Sabderat
Minister of Justice
Ministry of Justice
PO Box 302
Fax: +249 183 770883
Salutation: Dear Minister
Ibrahim Mohamed Hamed
Minister of the Interior
Ministry of the Interior
PO Box 2793
Fax: +249 183 776 554 (Please mark, "FAO Minister of Internal Affairs")
Salutation: Dear Minister
Dr Priscilla Joseph
Chair of the Human Rights Committee
Fax: +249 187 560 950
Salutation: Dear Dr Joseph
and to diplomatic representatives of Sudan accredited to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY.Check with the International Secretariat, or your section office, if sending appeals after 05 August.