Sudan News & Views (No.2)

Sudan News & Views (No.2)

                        S U D A N : N E W S &  V I E W S  
        Issue No 2                                      19 May 1994             
+ Sudan: News & Views is a fortnightly Electronic Newsletter.          +
+ Questions and comments can be sent to or to fax     +
+ number +44-81-905 0057.                                              +
In this issue:
  Lam Akol, who has been sacked by Riak Machar from his post as Foreign 
Relations Officer in SPLA United, issued a statement in Nairobi in  mid-
April, in which he attacked his former colleague Riak Machar for lacking 
seriousness and for staying away from the battle fields 'which made him 
isolated from his soldiers'.
  Akol, who belongs to the Shiluk tribe in Upper Nile Province, has 
returned to his tribal base in Malakal. Many sources has reported that 
negotiations had taken place in meetings on 15 and 28 April 1994 between 
Lam's group and the Government of Sudan officials.  
  Twenty nine students has been dismissed by the administration of the 
Gezira University in Wad Medani in the Central Region of Sudan. The 
students were accused of participating in the demonstrations that  took 
place in Wad Medani on 19 and 20 April 1994.   
The Vice Chancellor had also ordered the freezing of activities of  the 
University's Student Union and the confiscation of all its  properties.
  It is reported that Sheikh Abu Zeid Mohamed Hamza, a leader of the 
Islamic sect Ansar al-Sunna al-Muhammadiyya, has been arrested.    
Followers of the sect are staging a sit-in in a mosque belonging to the 
sect in District 1 in Al-Thawra borough of Omdurman. The group is 
demanding the release of their leader and the return of their mosques 
which were confiscated by the authorities.   
The Ansar al-Sunna are outspoken critics of the government and its 
National Islamic Front backers for using Islam as a political tool.    
Sheikh Abu Zeid, has been arrested in 1993 and was interrogated many 
times.  On 4 February 1994, five armed men attacked the mosque of Ansar 
al-Sunna during Friday prayers, killing 19 and injuring 26 of the  
worshippers. This attack was seen by many as a government attempt to 
intimidate the Ansar al-Sunna and send a threatening message to other 
opposition groups.   
  The Government of Sudan has reiterated its accusations for the US 
government of human rights violations.
    Abdel Aziz Shiddu, Sudan's Attorney General and Minister of Justice, 
said that their accusations are based  on a report by Amnesty 
        International.Shiddu, commenting on a statement issued by the US 
Embassy in Khartoum on 18 April 1994, added 'We know our duties and do 
not need anybody to advice us. We refuse the US insults both inside and 
abroad. All talk about human rights violations in Sudan is part of a 
plot and conspiracy to undermine the present government.' He described 
the Embassy's statement as political and he questioned  the objectives 
behind issuing such a statement after 5 months since the accusations 
were first levied by the Sudanese delegation to the UN. A statement by 
Sudan was distributed to the members of the General Assembly claiming 
that far greater human rights are violated in the USA, Israel and the UK 
than in Sudan.   
        Diplomatic sources in Khartoum had indicated that the Embassy's 
statement was a response to remarks made by Lt. Gen. Al-Bashir in an 
interview to Al-Multaga Magazine. Al-Bashir said that the human rights 
situation in Sudan is far better than in the USA, Israel or the UK. The 
magazine published a table comparing human rights violations in these 
countries and Sudan. The magazine claimed that  the data is obtained 
from a report by Amnesty International.   
        In its statement, which was widely circulated in Khartoum, the US 
Embassy said that the document is not produced by Amnesty  
International, as claimed by the Sudanese authorities, but most  
probably prepared by the government of Sudan itself. Amnesty  
International has issued a statement on 7 December 1993, one day  after 
the controversial document was presented by the Sudanese  delegation to 
the General Assembly, denying any involvement or  responsibility in the 
preparation of this document.   
        The Embassy's statement also described the many occasions where 
the human rights record of the government of Sudan has been criticized.   
It referred to Amnesty International reports on 19 February 93 and  29 
September 93,the UN General Assembly voting to condemn Sudan for its 
abuses of human rights on 6 December 1993 and the resolution adopted by 
the annual meeting of the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva in March 
1994. The Embassy's statement ended by saying 'We restate the fact that 
the human rights record of the Government of Sudan is very sad indeed'
        On another level, the annual US States Department's report accused 
Sudan of providing sanctuary to international terrorist organisations 
and having worrying relations with wide ranging fanatical groups through 
the National Islamic Front which controls the regime.
        The report also maintains that Sudan is a convenient meeting point  
and transit for groups supported by Iran and that the current Iranian  
Ambassador to Khartoum has participated in the occupation of the 
American Embassy in Tehran and was responsible for Iranian efforts to 
develop Hizbullah in Lebanon when he was a leading diplomat there.
        The report went on to say that despite the absence of clear 
evidence linking the Sudanese government to any terrorist attack around 
the world, but five of the fifteen being tried for the bombing of the 
World Trade Center in New York are Sudanese.
        The report also stated that Khartoum has increased its hostility 
towards the US. The report cited an example of a Sudanese journalist who 
called, in a Khartoum mosque, for the slaying ofthe American ambassador 
in Khartoum.  
  A huge fire has engulfed the building of the Sudanese Central bank  
(Bank of Sudan), on Friday 29 April 1994. Witnesses claimed that the  
fire destroyed everything apart from some reinforced safes which  
contained currency and some documents.
  It is worth mentioning that this is the fourth major fire on economic 
establishments during the last few weeks.
  The government issued a statement claiming that the fire was caused  
by an electric fault and that currency and documents were not harmed, 
while the Opposition claimed that the fire was a deliberate act of 
sabotage by the government to destroy evidence which links NIF 
supporters with corruption and misappropriation of funds.  
  Figures released by the Minister of Finance in Sudan for the  economic 
performance during the first half of the current financial year (June 93 
-July 94) show the following:  
[] The actual implementation as a percentage of the original plan is 
   as follows:
        Development projects            7.8%
        Higher education                11%
        Petroleum exploration           6.4%
        Industrial development          0%
[] Total earnings from exports for the 6 months is US$147m.
[] There is a sharp drop in agricultural output e.g.:
      Cotton (the main cash crop) production is 25% of the average 
production in previous years.

      Grains    62% 
      Peanuts   57% 
      Sesame    70%  of average in previous years.
[] Total petroleum imports for 6 months is US$252m.
[] Local currency budget deficit is 33 billion Sudanese Pounds.
 - The only remaining elephant in Khartoum Zoo had died in mid-March 
1994. The cause of death was reported by the zoo vet as due to 
starvation and dehydration. 
 - The government-backed Sudanese Union of Students has announced the 
death of ten of its members who are university students during the 
recent fighting in the South.The ten students are members of the Popular 
Defence Forces (a government militia) which was attacking SPLA forces 
near Nimoli.
 - The authorities in Eden, South Yemen, have accused Sudan of 
involvement in the current civil war in Yemen. Sudan is accused of 
supplying arms and fighters to the dominantly Islamic fundamentalist 
North Yemen. The claim was denied by the Sudanese government.
 - The Arabic weekly Alwasat (published by Al-Hayat in London)  
published, in its issue of Monday 9 May 1994, a long article about  the 
situation in Sudan which included interviews with government ministers 
and ordinary citizens. The article which is titled 'Save Us From The 
Salvation' discussed the economic situation and carried detailed 
comparisons of wages and the cost of living.  A full translation of the 
article is available with 'Sudan: News & Views' and can be sent by e-
mail (free of charge) to anyone who isinterested.
    *   'Sudan News & Views' is an independent (non-partisan,       *
    *    non-governmental) electronic publication based in London   *
    *    working to advocate peace, human rights and humanitarian   *
    *    aid for the Sudan.                                         *

Date: Sat, 2 Jul 94 14:28:10 BST
From: Yasin Miheisi <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: SNV-2

Editor: Ali B. Ali-Dinar

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