15 July 2012

Sudanese Court Sentences Woman to Death By Stoning Over Adultery Claims

Khartoum — A Sudanese court in Khartoum state sentenced a 23 year old women to death by stoning for adultery, reported a human rights group, the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS).

Sudan is one of few countries that provide death by stoning as a punishment. Rights groups condemn this cruel method of execution because it is designed to torture the victim and increase its suffering.

On 10 July 2012, Judge Imad Shamoun of Al-Nasir Criminal Court in Khartoum sentenced a 23 year old woman to death by stoning for adultery (Zina) under Article 146 of the Sudanese Penal Code 1991, ACJPS said in a press statement.

The young women called Ms. L.I.E who did not have any legal assistance pleaded guilty to the charge of adultery. International human rights law prohibits death sentences resulting from unfair trial.

L.I.E is a Misseiya women residing in Alizba area in Khartoum North. She is shackled by the legs and detained in an individual cell "giving rise to serious concerns about her welfare," the group stressed.

Last April a woman called Intisar Sharif Abdalla was sentenced to death by stoning by the Ombada court, in Khartoum state for adultery.

Women's rights activists say outraged by the repetition of sentences of death by stoning against women and urged to overturn the sentence like the previous cases.

Fahima Hashim, a women's rights activist who followed Abdalla's case, said sentences were often inconsistent in Sudan because the legal system gave authority to judges to decide punishments.

She called for the reform of articles in Sudan's criminal code which she said harm women's rights, including the death by stoning.

The ACJPS) urged the Sudanese government to overturn the sentence of death by stoning which was applied in violation of both domestic and international law and guarantee L.I.E's immediate and unconditional release.

"Under Article 135(3) of the Sudanese Criminal Procedure Code 1991, a defendant is entitled to legal representation in any criminal case that carries a punishment of 10 years or more imprisonment, amputation or death," the group said.

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