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Sudanese Church Pastor Illegally Detained For Five Months May Face Death Penalty for False Charges

( [email protected] ) May 26, 2016 12:35 PM EDT
A church pastor in Sudan is feared to get a death sentence if the government, known for its notoriety against Christians, will accuse him of crimes against the state, which carry a penalty of death. The pastor has been illegally detained for five months without any charges made against him.
Worry is increasing that Pastor Hassan Abduraheem Kodi Taour (right) will be charged by the government of Sudan with a crime punishable by death. Left foto is Telal Rata another pastor being detained in Sudan. Photo:WorldWatch Monitor

A church pastor in Sudan is feared to get a death sentence if the government, known for its notoriety against Christians, will accuse him of crimes against the state, which carry a penalty of death. The pastor has been illegally detained for five months without any charges made against him.  

The International Christian Concern (ICC) said all metrics for another case of Christian persecution are present, like the lapsed of the reglementary period to file a complaint from the time of the arrest, depriving the detainee to talk with relatives, and committing him to the custody of the Attorney General.

Pastor Hassan Abduraheem Kodi Taour, the leader of Sudan Church of Christ, was arrested last December 21, and the Sudanese law dictates that a complaint must be filed within 45 days from the arrest. His attorney has told ICC that the state is planning on charging him with espionage and various crimes against the state. 

"We believe there is no case, but as I have learned the government is contemplating to send a complaint against him to the court anytime this month," said attorney Mohaned Mustafa, a human rights lawyer.

Last May 10 the Attorney General had announced he is taking over Taour's case, and of his custody- the usual government strategy when it intends to prosecute a religious leader with death.

In five months of detention, Taour has developed symptoms of stomach ulcer from the government's maltreatment.

ICC's regional manager for Africa, Troy Augustine, said the Sudanese government's treatment to Taour follow an "unsurprising pattern that has continued for decades" and has become its trademark as an "enemy of religious freedom and one of the prime persecutor's of the church in Africa."

Augustine said Sudan had committed to stand for human rights and for religious freedom but is doing the other way around making itself a hypocrite.

He said street protest or in front Sudan embassy is the only hope left to save Taour from death.