El Fasher — The UN Independent Expert's assessment of the human rights situation in Sudan is "hollow, and overlooked the facts of the humanitarian situation in the country" according to a reaction by the Darfur Bar Association (DBA).
In a statement critical of the report by the UN Independent Expert on the Situation of Human Rights in Sudan, Aristide Nononsi, who conducted an 11-day mission to Sudan in May, the DBA says that "the report lacks substantive information about the actual situation and conditions of human rights in Sudan".
In his report following his fourth visit to Sudan, Nononsi commended the Government of Sudan for positive developments, but lamented human rights issues in the country that are still largely unaddressed, and urged the country to implement democratic reforms.
Among his concerns, Nononsi mentioned the detention of human rights champion Dr Mudawi Ibrahim and his driver Hafiz Idris, who have been detained by the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) since their arrest at the campus of Khartoum University on 7 December last year, "as I believe that they are being held solely for their legitimate work on protecting and promoting human rights in Sudan".
In a statement to Radio Dabanga, the DBA said that the first assessment of the independent expert would lead to a deepening of the humanitarian crisis in Sudan. The statement said that the report of the independent expert did not include the systematic arrests and violations against Darfuri students at Sudanese universities.
"The preliminary assessment of the expert did not include any reference to the terrible violations afflicted on the innocent unarmed civilians by the practices of the regular forces and militias such as the systematic attack on civilians in 2017 and the beginning of January 2017 to the date of the visit of the independent expert to Sudan.
"The independent expert did not mention the systematic rape of women in a manner that disrespects the dignity of the victims and the society in Darfur.
The statement said that the independent expert described the ceasefire in Darfur as coherent, stressing that his information about the reality of the situation on the ground in Darfur is inaccurate.
"In the same week of the assessment, fierce battles took place in the states of North and East Darfur between the regime's rapid support forces and some Darfuri armed movements in which the innocent villages of innocent civilians were subjected to all kinds of human rights violations, mass displacement and homelessness, as the Governor of East Darfur called for leaving the dead bodies of the armed movements in the open to be eaten by animals and birds, this along with showing the war hostages through videos recorded in the Internet and the WhatsApp in violation of international conventions concerning the treatment of war hostages and the teachings of religions and customs."