UN calls for probe into rape allegations in Sudan protests

The U.N. human rights office has called for an independent investigation into allegations of sexual violence, including rape and gang rape, during anti-coup protests in Sudan earlier this week

Via AP news wire
Tuesday 21 December 2021 18:52
Sudan
Sudan

The U.N. human rights office on Tuesday called for an independent investigation into allegations of sexual violence including rape and gang rape during mass anti-coup protests in Sudan earlier this week, a spokeswoman said.

Liz Throssell, a spokeswoman for the U.N. human rights office in Geneva said they received “disturbing” reports alleging that 13 women and girls were raped or gang raped in the demonstrations on Sunday in the capital, Khartoum

There was no immediate comment from Sudan’s government.

Tens of thousands of Sudanese took to the streets in Khartoum and elsewhere in Sudan on Sunday, marking the third anniversary of the uprising that forced the removal of autocrat Omar al-Bashir in April 2019.

The rallies turned violent in many places as security forces moved against the protesters. At least two people were killed and over 300 others were wounded, according the Sudan Doctors Committee, a professional medical union.

Women were reportedly sexually harassed while fleeing the area around the presidential palace in Khartoum when Sudanese forces fired tear gas and live ammunition there to disperse the protests, Throssell.

“We urge a prompt, independent and thorough investigation into the allegations of rape and sexual harassment, as well as the allegations of death and injury of protesters as a result of the unnecessary or disproportionate use of force, in particular use of live ammunition,” she said.

It was not the first time Sudanese security forces face accusations of sexual violence against female protesters.

On June 3, 2019, dozens of women were raped when forces tore apart a sit-in camp outside the military's headquarters in Khartoum, according to the doctors committee and the testimonies of several of the women.

Sunday’s protests were one of the largest since the military took over on Oct. 25, removing Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok’s transitional government in a coup that rattled the country's fragile transition to democracy and led to relentless street demonstrations.

At least 46 people have been killed and hundreds wounded in protests triggered by the coup, according to a tally by the Sudanese medical group. Hamdok was reinstated last month amid international pressure in a deal that calls for an independent technocratic Cabinet under military oversight led by him.

However, Sudan's pro-democracy movement rejects the deal and has vowed to continue street protests to pressure coup leaders to hand over power to a fully civilian government to lead the transition.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in