Sudan: Young Sudanese 'Lured to Libya' Return to Khartoum

Khartoum / Abu Dhabi — Some 50 young Sudanese men arrived at Khartoum airport yesterday afternoon from Libya. They were hired by the Emirati Black Shield company to work as security guards in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Instead they were given an three month military training and sent to Libya to guard oil refineries and strategic locations in the area held by Gen Khalifa Haftar.

The families of the victims organised a social media campaign to denounce the transfer of their sons and brothers to Libya. They regard the transfer to Libya as an act of fraud.

On Monday, hundreds of family members of the victims organised a rally at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Khartoum. They demanded that all victims be returned to Sudan and that those involved be held accountable.

Several family members said during the rally that in total more than 300 young Sudanese were contracted to work as security guards in the Emirates. The father of one of the victims announced that, after the protests in Khartoum, 175 young Sudanese were returned to the Emirates from Libya. 125 young men still remain in Libya, he said.

It was expected that another group of young Sudanese would arrive in Khartoum from Dubai on Tuesday evening.

The demonstrators at the rally chanted slogans calling on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to intervene in order to restore the dignity of the Sudanese people and to condemn the Black Shield company. They demanded that its employees be held accountable and that the victims receive financial compensation.

The protesters delivered a memorandum with their demands to the newly appointed Minister of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Omar Gamareldin.

Omar Gamareldin promised that all the victims will return to Sudan.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also said in a statement that the competent authorities in the Emirates confirmed their willingness to work together with Sudan to investigate the Black Shield case.

The ministry stated that it is in constant contact with the Sudanese embassy in Abu Dhabi, the embassy of the UAE in Khartoum, and the competent UAE authorities.

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