7 June 2019

African Council of Religious Leaders - Religions for Peace (Nairobi)

Africa: The Statement of the African Council of Religious Leaders - Religions for Peace (ACRL - RfP) on the Excessive Use of Force on Protestors in Sudan

Photo: Al Jazeera English/YouTube
Security forces in Sudan moved in to break the sit-in outside the army headquarters.
press release

Nairobi, Kenya — The African Council of Religious Leaders - Religions for Peace (ACRL-RfP) strongly condemns the violent response of the Transitional Military Council to the ongoing peaceful protests on the streets of Khartoum. The recent use of brutal force to disperse peaceful protestors by unarmed civilians in Khartoum, Sudan are indeed shocking and tragic.

We firmly reject and condemn the response of the transition government to peaceful protestors including the physical violence, use of live ammunition, targeting of medical centres and the detention without trial of activists and protestors in their quest for freedom of expression and we stand in solidarity with them.

We call upon the military apparatus in Sudan to use restraint and halt the attacks on medical centers and further allow safe access and passage to all health services.  They should uphold the rule of law and release all persons detained without trail.  The use of harassment, unlawful detainment and grievous bodily harm to civilians is unjustifiable under any circumstances.

We reiterate the urgent need to uphold the rule of law and respect the freedom of expression and ensure the protection of all persons regardless of political affiliation. Power and authority reside in the citizens of Sudan and not the barrel of a gun nor the use of force on innocent civilians. The untimely deaths of protesters and damage of infrastructure must be investigated openly and all criminal elements held accountable for their actions.

We call upon an open, positive and accommodative process of engagement between the Transitional Military Council and the opposition alliance in Sudan for a sustainable peace and good governance in the country.

We call upon the religious leaders in the Republic of Sudan to stand in solidarity with their faith communities and members in the violence and stand for safe spaces for democracy. We call for platforms of dialogue and the rule of law to reign in the governance of the country to ensure peace and justice for all.

We support the statements by the African Union (AU) and the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) on the Situation in Sudan and call upon African leaders to push for peaceful resolution and settlement of negotiations by all parties.

We hold in prayer the souls of the departed as a result of this unfortunate violence, may they rest in peace; and we remember the many who are injured.

The African Council of Religious Leaders - Religions for Peace (ACRL-RfP) is the largest and most representative multi-religious platform in Africa.  Our vision is Sustainable peace and Justice in Africa; with a mission in mobilizing religious leaders and their communities to build peaceful, just, hopeful and harmonious societies in Africa.

We reaffirm our commitment to peace and furthering the freedom of expression and conscience.

RELIGIONS FOR PEACE - the world's largest and most representative multi-religious coalition-advances common action among the world's religious communities for peace. Religions for Peace works to transform violent conflict, advance human development, promote just and harmonious societies, and protect the earth. The global Religions for Peace network comprises a World Council of senior religious leaders from all regions of the world; six regional inter-religious bodies and more than 90 national ones; and the Global Women of Faith Network and Global Interfaith Youth Network.

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