Geneva, Khartoum – 2 November 2021
At least 10 civilians killed, 250 injured and 36 detained in unknown locations: this is the result of a week of violent repression in Sudan. Given the deterioration of the human rights situation following the military coup on 25 October, the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS) call on the United Nations and regional State groups to adopt urgent measures to stop violations and restore democracy.
On Saturday 30 October, thousands of Sudanese protesters took to the streets to demand an end to military rule and the restoration of a civilian-led government. The army and security forces shot, killing three people and injuring at least 110.
On the day the coup unfolded, seven peaceful protesters had been killed and 140 injured, which brings the total number of casualties to at least 10 people killed and 250 injured since the military seized power.
The Sudanese Joint Security Forces conducted arbitrary arrests of civilians, human rights defenders, activists, journalists, and political leaders at their homes and detained them in undisclosed locations. At least 36 civilians were arrested and are still held in incommunicado detention.
The country faces a disruption of internet connectivity and mobile communications that risks to further isolate any opponent to the military regime.
Urgent measures to stop human rights violations
By using violence, including torture and other forms of ill-treatment, the military risks undermining all the recent efforts of the United Nations to accompany the country in implementing human rights and the rule of law. Notably, the UN Security Council had established in June 2020 an Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS) with a human rights mandate.
The international community should immediately take all appropriate measures to stop the unnecessary and disproportionate use of force and other forms of human rights abuses against civilians, human rights activists, and protestors in Sudan.
The ACJPS and the OMCT welcome the urgent meeting of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on 5 November. States on the UNHRC should request Sudan’s military authorities to restore democracy and uphold the right to freedom of peaceful assembly. Sudanese judicial authorities should provide remedies to all victims of the unnecessary use of force, release those detained, and conduct independent, impartial, and transparent investigations into any allegations of human rights violations, in order to ensure that those responsible are held accountable. The UN Security Council and regional State groups should also examine the situation in Sudan and, if necessary, adopt sanctions targeting the perpetrators of human rights violations.
The World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) is the largest global NGO group actively standing up to torture and protecting human rights defenders worldwide. It has more than 200 members in 90 countries. Its international Secretariat is based in Geneva, Switzerland.
The ACJPS is dedicated to creating a Sudan committed to all human rights, the rule of law and peace, in which the rights and freedoms of the individual are honoured and where all persons and groups are granted their rights to non-discrimination, equality and justice.
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