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Women’s rights activist held in Khartoum raid by soldiers

AN EMERGENCY appeal for the immediate release of leading Sudanese women’s rights activist Amira Osman was made yesterday after she was detained during a raid on her home in the capital Khartoum.

Eyewitnesses said that a military convoy had arrived, comprising some 30 soldiers armed with Kalashnikov AK-47 assault rifles, sticks and hoses.

They terrorised Ms Osman’s family, including small children and her elderly mother, locals said.

The engineer is chairwoman of the No to Women’s Oppression Initiative and a member of the Riyadh neighbourhood resistance committee.

Her whereabouts is unknown and fears for her wellbeing are growing. Ms Osman has health problems and uses crutches for mobility. 

“Her health condition and her use of medication puts her life at imminent risk  following her unlawful, barbaric arrest,” the No to Women’s Oppression Initiative said in a statement.

“We urge all human rights and women’s rights organisations to put maximum pressure on the leaders of the military coup in Sudan demanding the immediate and unconditional release of Amira Osman.”

Sudan has been gripped by mass protests since the military seized power in October. They have been met with widespread repression, with at least 72 demonstrators killed by the security forces. 

In December, the United Nations reported allegations that protesters have been subjected to mass rape and gang rape.

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