Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Campaign Launched in Support of Detained Sudanese Journalists | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Cairo, Asharq Al-Awsat- The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information in Egypt launched an international campaign in support of two female Sudanese journalists expected to be put on trial in what it calls the “continuation” of Sudanese authorities pursuing opposition journalists.

Sudanese authorities handed over Lubna Ahmad al Hussein, who was charged with “wearing indecent clothes that violate public morality,” to the tribunal two weeks ago. Amal Habbani, another journalist, was arrested on Tuesday for [publicly] supporting al Hussein.

Habbani was interrogated after she published an article in defense of Lubna al Hussein. The general discipline police authority filed a complaint against Habbani requesting ten million Sudanese Pounds (US $400,000) in compensation for violating the General Discipline Law.

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information [ANHRI] released a statement Wednesday calling for international organizations concerned with the freedom of journalists and women’s rights to support Habbani and al Hussein and to confront what it described as “unfair trials”.

Executive Director of ANHRI Gamal Eid told Asharq Al-Awsat: “The Sudanese regime is using the general [discipline] law to pursue opposition journalists without there being any guarantees of fair trials.”

The statement released by ANHRI called for the abolishment or the amendment of the General Discipline Law, which it described as “one of the most oppressive and discriminating laws against Sudanese women.”

“ANHRI declares that these trials are invalid and illegal as the defendant is neither assigned a lawyer nor allowed to speak for herself in court,” the statement further read.

It also highlighted that the general discipline police in Sudan filed a complaint against Amal Habbani for writing a report entitled ‘Lubna…A Case of Subduing a Woman’s Body’ in defence of Lubna al Hussein. It was published in the Sudanese newspaper Ajrass al Horriya on July 12.