| Amnesty urges release of Sudan activist at risk of ‘torture‘

Amnesty International on Thursday urged Sudan to free a human rights activist detained by security agents in Khartoum and at risk of being tortured after having been deported by Saudi Arabia.

Husham Ali Mohammad Ali has been held by Sudan‘s powerful National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) at its headquarters since his arrival on Tuesday, Amnesty said.

“Husham Ali is at great risk of torture and other ill-treatment while in the hands of the NISS,” the rights group‘s Joan Nyanyuki said in a statement.

Ali, a political and online activist against torture and corruption in Sudan, was arrested by Saudi authorities in November and held in solitary confinement until January, Amnesty said.

Amnesty said it had urged the Saudi government not to return Ali to Sudan where he risked facing arrest and torture because of his human rights work.

“Saudi Arabia has violated with impunity the principle of non-refoulement, which prohibits nations from returning individuals to countries where they would face risk of human rights violations or abuses,” Nyanyuki said.

A freelance accountant residing in Saudi Arabia since 2010, Ali wrote on online platforms about alleged corruption in the Sudanese government, Amnesty said.

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“He also published on torture in detention by the Sudanese authorities and expressed his support for acts of civil disobedience carried out during November and December 2016 in Sudan on his Facebook page,” it said.

In July 2017, Saudi Arabia deported three other Sudanese activists to Sudan who were immediately detained by NISS, the rights group said.

The three were later released but said they has been tortured in detention, it added.

Sudanese human rights activists and opposition leaders are regularly detained by security agents for expressing views opposed to President Omar al-Bashir‘s regime.

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