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PRESS RELEASE ON THE DECISION TO SUSPEND 13 INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN
ORGANISATIONS AND THE CLOSURE OF
3 NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATIONS IN SUDAN

Banjul , 7 April 2009: The Special Rapporteur of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) on Human Rights Defenders in Africa, Me. Reine Alapini-Gansou, expresses her profound concern about the recent decision of the Sudanese government to suspend 13 humanitarian international organisations working in the country.

She further expresses deep concern regarding the decision to ban 3 national non-governmental organizations for the defence of human rights, that is, (Khartoum Center for Human Rights and EnvironmentalDevelopment, Amal Center for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of the Victims of Torture and SudanDevelopment Organization), as well as on allegations of continuous harassment of human rights defenders by Sudanese Security Forces.

The Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders in Africa condemns such actions which constitute a violation of international human rights and humanitarian law, and an abrogation by Sudan of its obligations under international law.

The Special Rapporteur would like to remind Sudan of its obligations under the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, the Kigali and the Grand Bay Declarations, as well as other international instruments ratified by Sudan, to respect and ensure the protection of human rights.

The Special Rappoteur invites Sudan to take all necessary measures to:

1) Put an immediate end to threats and harassment of human rights defenders in the country; and

2) Allow all national and international non-governmental organizations providing humanitarian work in the country to operate freely, and those expelled to return.

Me. Reine Alapini-Gansou
Commissioner, Special Rapporteur
On the Rights of Human Rights Defenders in Africa.