Nine university professors freed in Sudan

October 30, 2013 12:54 pm


Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir speaks during the opening of a new session of parliament/AFP
Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir speaks during the opening of a new session of parliament/AFP
KHARTOUM, Oct 30 – Sudanese authorities freed nine university professors after detaining them for a day following a raid on a Khartoum-area campus, a lawyer said on Wednesday.

“Later last night all of them were released,” Nabeel Adeeb, a prominent lawyer and head of the Sudanese Human Rights Monitoring Association, told AFP.

Many of the detainees are activists. Adeeb said they were picked up while meeting inside Ahfad University, in Khartoum’s twin city of Omdurman, on Monday night, hours after President Omar al-Bashir spoke of political dialogue and reform.

Adeeb did not immediately have further details on the releases.

Speaking after the most serious split in years within his ruling party, Bashir hinted to parliament on Monday that press censorship would ease now that the country had “returned to normal” after September protests in which dozens died and hundreds were initially detained.

The protests, sparked by the government’s cut in fuel subsidies, were the worst urban unrest in Bashir’s 24-year rule.

The president said he wanted a review of all state institutions, from sports to social and political, but he did not elaborate.

He repeated a call first made in April for a broad dialogue with all political parties, even with armed rebel groups.

More than 30 prominent reformers within Bashir’s ruling National Congress Party issued a public memorandum to the president in which they criticised the regime’s crackdown on protest.

They announced last weekend that they would form a new party after the NCP sought to expel three leaders of their reform group.


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