14 August 2017

Sudan: Defence Team Demands 'Immediate Release' of East Darfur Rizeigat

Khartoum — The defence team of 23 Rizeigat omdas who were detained in East Darfur in the past weeks have demanded their "immediate release" in a memorandum on Wednesday.

After fierce fighting erupted between Rizeigat and Maaliya tribesmen in East Darfur in July, the authorities started an unprecedented detention campaign against their leaders. Khartoum recently adopted a new, strict policy to end tribal clashes by holding tribal leaders who encourage attacks on the other tribes responsible for their actions.

After having been convicted under the Emergency Law in East Darfur, they were sent to prisons in Khartoum and Port Sudan.

The defence team of 23 Rizeigat omdas [native administration officers] submitted a memorandum on Wednesday to both the federal Minister of Justice and the Attorney-General on Sunday, saying that the arrest of the 23 Rizeigat "violates all laws.

"According to the law the defendants have not committed criminal acts. They have not even been charged, and therefore their imprisonment is illegal," defence lawyer El Siddig Abdelmajeed told Radio Dabanga.

"For this reason, we urged the Attorney-General and the Minister of Justice to release the 23 omdas immediately."

The lawyer added that de defence team has requested to visit the omdas who are currently held in Port Sudan prisons.

The Maaliya have also protested the detention of their omdas and other community members.


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